Aveo focuses on medication safety for home care residents

Aveo has partnered with Choice Aged Care to support staff and home care consumers with a full suite of medication review and management services. 

Senior living provider Aveo has partnered with clinical pharmacist company Choice Aged Care to support staff and home care consumers with medication review and management services. 

Aveo is the operator and manager of over 90 retirement living communities across Australia as well as an approved home care provider. It offers a range of independent and assisted living options and delivers tailored care and support to help home care consumers remain independent in their home.

CAC already delivers Residential Medication Management Review and Quality Use of Medicines services to more than 500 aged care facilities and 43,000 residents, and this is the first Australian senior living operator to engage these services from the professional pharmacy services provider.

Currently pharmacists are funded by the federal government to deliver RMMR and QUM services in residential aged care. The government is also funding a new program commencing soon to embed pharmacists in all aged care homes. While people living in the community can access the Home Medicines Review service via a GP referral, there are no funded pharmacist initiatives in the home aged care sector like those in residential aged care.

Aveo said it has privately contracted CAC to bridge this gap as part of its commitment to safe and high-quality care. Aveo’s chief risk officer Joshua Little said the organisation was excited by this “industry-leading” opportunity to implement a robust system for the safe and quality use of medicines by home care recipients.

“Through access to industry-leading training, and medicines-related information resources, our nursing staff will be better positioned to proactively identify and mitigate risks of harm, leading to improved quality of life for care recipients,” Mr Little said in a statement.

Choice Aged Care chief executive officer and clinical pharmacist Michael Bonner called Aveo’s investment and validation of the role for clinical pharmacists “trailblazing” and “a watershed moment for the home care sector” in Australia.

Michael Bonner

“I expect Aveo will be first of all home care providers” to use clinical pharmacists to provide medication safety stewardship activities, Mr Bonner told Australian Ageing Agenda.

Medication management for older people in the community is a risk to both care provider and care recipient and despite the government’s preference to support older people to remain independent and at home, pharmacists are not yet funded to facilitate that objective, he said. However, Mr Bonner is optimistic that could change.

“My sense is that the home care sector is where residential aged care was in the early 1990s. At the time medication safety stewardship was virtually non-existent and systems and services were highly fragmented.”

By the end of the decade, the government was funding pharmacist-delivered RMMRs and QUM services in residential settings, after research showed its benefits, Mr Bonner said.

“I am optimistic the government will similarly feel compelled to fund pharmacist QUM-style support for approved home care providers,” Mr Bonner told AAA. “If the Aged Care Act 1997 triggered the funding for clinical pharmacists in residential care, one might expect the revised Aged Care Quality Standards – obligating home care providers to deliver compliance in various components of #5.3 Medication Safety – will compel the government to allocate funding to pharmacists to provide medication safety stewardship activities in the home care setting.”

Included pharmacist services

Under the deal, CAC will provide services and access to a range of its medication safety tools and resources to Aveo as an organisation, their staff and home care consumers including:

  • medication management advisory and continuous improvement services, including establishing an organisation-wide medication advisory committee
  • medication review services
  • access to clinical, care, drug and health information resources for staff and consumers
  • online training for staff and face-to-face information sessions for staff and consumers
  • clinical governance framework and continuous improvement support relating to polypharmacy, psychotropic use and antimicrobial stewardship
  • a geriatrician service.

“The Aveo team very much look forward to working with Choice Aged Care in conjunction with individual care recipients and their medical practitioners to support the health and wellbeing of consumers,” said Mr Little.

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Tags: aveo, choice aged care, josh-little, michael-bonner,

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