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East Lancashire CCG Medicines Management Team shortlisted for national health award

The medicines management team based at NHS East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has been shortlisted for a national health award for the work they have done to improve specialist stoma, continence, wound care and nutritional services in primary care.

The Value in Healthcare Awards, run by the Health Service Journal aims to recognise and reward outstanding efficiency, and improvement in the NHS. The Awards recognise how the NHS has improved patient care, while at the same time making the best use of the available resources.

The shortlisted scheme involved creating a specialist multidisciplinary team consisting of a specialist nurse, specialist dietician, pharmacists and technicians who have supported and improved the quality of life for patients using stoma, continence appliances, wound care and those prescribed oral nutritional supplements.

Dr Lisa Rogan, Head of Medicines Management at NHS East Lancashire CCG said: “I am delighted that the CCG has been shortlisted for this award. The award recognises the real achievement of the team to improve the quality of life for patients who are prescribed stoma and continence appliances, dressings and nutritional supplements. The team’s role is to ensure that patients receive the best support they can, suited to their circumstances, while at the same time avoiding any unnecessary waste or duplication due to misunderstanding instructions.”

Dr Rogan added: “We found that a number of patients had poor experiences regarding their prescriptions. This was due to misunderstanding instructions or having anxiety about the product that they had been prescribed. There were also examples of unnecessary overprescribing and duplication leading to unnecessary waste. The specialist team supported patients with information, advice and practical guidance which has improved their quality of life through better use of their prescribed products, as well as helping to avoid duplication, and waste.”

In one case, a patient had been over-ordering ileostomy bags due to ill-fitting and leakage, leading to skin soreness and damage and subsequent anxiety for the patient. This prompted the specialist nurse to help and provide support. The nurse helped the patient find better fitting appliances and demonstrated correct fitting to avoid leakages. The patient felt more confident and was able to reduce the frequency of bag changes.

Overall, by working with patients and supporting them in their use of appliances, dressings, and nutritional supplements, patients have had a better experience, resulting in improved quality of life. The NHS has also benefited financially, saving over £250,000 through the avoidance of duplication and unnecessary waste.

The HSJ Value in Healthcare awards are very competitive and a much coveted award. The shortlisted team will find out on 24 May if they have won the award, at a ceremony in London.