A4_aw.inddA4_aw.inddHospitals across Greater Manchester have launched a campaign this week called ‘Your medicines matter’ to remind patients and carers to bring their medicines when they come into hospital for an appointment, are admitted or need to go to A&E.

The region’s hospitals are making the ‘Your medicines matter’ plea to improve safety and provide a better experience for patients. It is important to bring in medicines from home because you will:

  • help hospital staff decide on the best and safest treatment for you
  • continue taking medicines you recognise
  • reduce waste and the cost of hospitals reissuing medicines you already have
  • help reduce delays when it is time to go home.

If you cannot bring your medicines when you are first admitted, for example if you have come in as an emergency, relatives or carers will be asked to bring medicines in when they visit. By ‘medicines’, our hospitals mean anything you have bought from pharmacies or supermarkets and are taking or using, as well as medicines that have been prescribed for you – tablets, capsules, liquids, creams, inhalers, drops, injections and patches.

When you come into hospital, staff will check your medicines. If they are safe to use, they will be stored securely along with any other medicines you may need and will be used during your stay. When leaving hospital, staff will ensure you have at least a seven day supply of medicines to go home with.

Richard Hey, Director of Pharmacy, Central Manchester University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said,

“By bringing your own medicines into hospital it allows us to get a quick and accurate picture of everything you are taking or using. This helps us to provide safe and appropriate care and also means your medicines are available to take from the start of your admission.”

Jon Rouse, Chief Officer of the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, said:

“Your medicines Matter is a fantastic initiative that I hope will really encourage patients to remember to bring their own medication in to hospital with them. Not only does it mean staff can decided on the best and safest treatment in the quickest time, it also cuts down significantly on waste and could save money for the NHS which could be reinvested in to front line services.”

As well as meaning better care for patients, if more people could remember to bring medicines from home it would also help save the cost of prescribing duplicate medicines. Prescribing medicines again for patients who leave theirs at home is one of the reasons for the region’s significant medicine waste.  If levels of medicines waste in Greater Manchester match those seen across the country this could equate to £18.8m annually which, if saved, could be reinvested into providing front-line care for patients.