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Medicines: information for adult social care services

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  • Organisations we regulate

Find the medicines information for adult social care by type of care setting.

Or see the full list of medicines information for adult social care services.

Care homes

There will be times when people spend time away from their residential care setting. When this happens, it is vital to consider the safe continuity of medicines supply.
Gabapentin and pregabalin are now Schedule 3 controlled drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, and Class C of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.
Covert administration is when medicines are administered in a disguised format.
All care settings should have a written policy for the safe disposal of surplus, unwanted or expired medicines.
This information reflects new International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative guidelines adopted from 1 April 2018.
During end of life care, one clinician should be responsible for a person’s medicines. This will depend on where the person lives but would usually be their GP. In some cases, hospice teams may give support.
Enteral feeding tubes provide access to the stomach or jejunum (small intestine). They are usually used in cases where there is an obstruction or difficulty in swallowing.
External medicines can include creams, ointments, lotions and patches.
You will need to use a fluid administration chart if a person is at risk of dehydration.
Sharps injuries are a well-known risk in the health and social care sector. Sharps contaminated with an infected patient's blood can transmit more than 20 diseases, including hepatitis B, C and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Anticoagulants are used to prevent the blood from clotting as normal and are therefore used to treat and prevent blood clots.
Insulin is a hormone which helps to regulate metabolism and lowers blood glucose levels.
Lithium salts are usually used as mood stabilisers, for example, in the management and treatment of mania, hypomania and recurrent depression, in bipolar disorder and sometimes for aggressive behaviour.
Sodium valproate and valproic acid are known collectively as valproate. Brands include Epilim, Depakote, Convulex, Episenta, Epival, Kentlim, Orlept, Syonell and Valpaland. There are other generic brands.
Oxygen has been widely used medically for many years. It is a gas and you should treat it as a medicine.
Anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) are used to prevent seizures. This can include seizures caused by epilepsy as well as non-epilepsy seizures.
Medicines optimisation looks at how people use medicines over time. Medicines reconciliation and medication reviews play an integral part in medicine optimisation.
You might use a range of different MCAs in adult social care settings. They should not be the first choice intervention to help people manage their medicines.
Information about a range of frequently used non-prescription medicines which people can buy over the counter to treat minor illnesses.
Polypharmacy refers to prescribing or use of more than a certain number of medicines, such as ten or more.
NICE guidance on managing medicines in care homes (SC1) states that care home providers should ensure that a robust process is in place for identifying, reporting, reviewing and learning from medicines errors involving residents.
'Self-administration' is when a person in a care home can look after and take their own medicines.
Care homes with nursing services usually hold medicines labelled for people but may also consider holding stocks of controlled drugs, particularly if people are at the end of their lives.
This guidance describes how you must manage medicines which need to be in the 'cold chain'.
Medicines should be stored in a way that means they are safe and will be effective when administered.
Information about the use of time sensitive medicines in adult social care services.
Appropriate training, support and competency makes care safe, high quality and consistent.
PRN medicines are prescribed to treat various conditions and should be taken when required by the patient.

Home care

These are some of the key points from the NICE guidance about administration of medicines for adults in community settings.
Gabapentin and pregabalin are now Schedule 3 controlled drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, and Class C of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.
Covert administration is when medicines are administered in a disguised format.
This information reflects new International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative guidelines adopted from 1 April 2018.
Enteral feeding tubes provide access to the stomach or jejunum (small intestine). They are usually used in cases where there is an obstruction or difficulty in swallowing.
External medicines can include creams, ointments, lotions and patches.
You will need to use a fluid administration chart if a person is at risk of dehydration.
Sharps injuries are a well-known risk in the health and social care sector. Sharps contaminated with an infected patient's blood can transmit more than 20 diseases, including hepatitis B, C and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
Anticoagulants are used to prevent the blood from clotting as normal and are therefore used to treat and prevent blood clots.
Insulin is a hormone which helps to regulate metabolism and lowers blood glucose levels.
Lithium salts are usually used as mood stabilisers, for example, in the management and treatment of mania, hypomania and recurrent depression, in bipolar disorder and sometimes for aggressive behaviour.
Sodium valproate and valproic acid are known collectively as valproate. Brands include Epilim, Depakote, Convulex, Episenta, Epival, Kentlim, Orlept, Syonell and Valpaland. There are other generic brands.
Anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) are used to prevent seizures. This can include seizures caused by epilepsy as well as non-epilepsy seizures.
Medicines optimisation looks at how people use medicines over time. Medicines reconciliation and medication reviews play an integral part in medicine optimisation.
Medicines support is any support that enables a person to manage their medicines. These are some of the key points from the NICE guidance about managing medicines for adults in community settings.
The person receiving medicines support will usually be responsible for ordering, transporting, storing and disposing of their medicines. But, if you take on this responsibility, you need to have appropriate processes in place.
Information about a range of frequently used non-prescription medicines which people can buy over the counter to treat minor illnesses.
Polypharmacy refers to prescribing or use of more than a certain number of medicines, such as ten or more.
NICE guidance on managing medicines in care homes (SC1) states that care home providers should ensure that a robust process is in place for identifying, reporting, reviewing and learning from medicines errors involving residents.
Information about the use of time sensitive medicines in adult social care services.
Appropriate training, support and competency makes care safe, high quality and consistent.
You might use a range of different MCAs in home care services. They should not be the first choice intervention to help people manage their medicines.

Shared Lives schemes

Shared Lives Schemes register with CQC to provide personal care. Medicines administration is an ancillary activity to personal care and regulated by CQC. We regulate at scheme level, through agency locations.

Supported living

A CQC registered provider may provide personal care to a person in a supported living scheme and also administer their medicines. The medicines administration is considered ‘ancillary to’ the personal care they are receiving.

 

Last updated:
17 January 2020

 


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