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Looking for the “Little Things”: A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Medicines Monitoring for Older People Using the ADRe Resource

1
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Swansea University, Swansea SA2 8PP, UK
2
Independent Researcher, Swansea SA9 2GA, UK
3
Faculty of Science, Charles Sturt University, Bathurst 2795, Australia
4
Faculty of Nursing and Health Sciences, Nord University, 8049 Bodø, Norway
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Geriatrics 2020, 5(4), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/geriatrics5040079
Received: 25 September 2020 / Revised: 14 October 2020 / Accepted: 15 October 2020 / Published: 19 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Geriatrics)
Advances in medicines have increased the effectiveness of treatments and the social and cultural authority of doctors. However, as prescribing has become the dominant modality of treatment, the “pharmaceuticalization” of medical practice has often resulted in treatment “at a distance”, with doctors having limited contact with patients. Older and poorer people, who are socially distanced from medical prescribers, suffer more adverse drug reactions (ADRs) than the general population. A team approach to checking patients systematically for ADRs, as detailed in manufacturers’ literature, can minimise medication errors, but regular review is rare. This paper explains the benefits of medicines monitoring to protect older patients from iatrogenic harm, such as over-sedation, falls, or drug-induced Parkinsonism. We show how multidisciplinary initiatives to optimise prescribing can be supported by using a recognised resource—the adverse drug reaction profile (ADRe). The profile identifies and documents patients’ signs and symptoms of putative ADRs. Better monitoring allows professionals to adjust prescribing and respond to identified problems with agility. Implementation of systematic monitoring will require changes to the regulatory regime and better inter-professional cooperation. Providing carers, nurses and pharmacists with a structured system to monitor patients would democratise relevant medical knowledge and help address ageism and the socio-economic health divide. View Full-Text
Keywords: adverse drug reactions; patient safety; nursing; medicine management; long-term care; community care; older people care adverse drug reactions; patient safety; nursing; medicine management; long-term care; community care; older people care
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Hughes, D.; Jordan, M.; Logan, P.A.; Willson, A.; Snelgrove, S.; Storey, M.; Vaismoradi, M.; Jordan, S. Looking for the “Little Things”: A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Medicines Monitoring for Older People Using the ADRe Resource. Geriatrics 2020, 5, 79.

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