The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and adult social care in England. We make sure that health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.
When CQC inspects health and care services they assess how well these services meet people’s needs. As part of this, they look at how people’s medicines are optimised. Medicines optimisation is the safe and effective use of medicines to enable the best possible outcomes for people. It also looks at the value that medicines deliver, making sure that they are both clinically and cost effective, and that people get the right choice of medicines, at the right time, with clinicians engaging them in the process.
From the analysis of inspection reports, notifications of incidents and enforcement notices, the CQC have categorised the most common areas of risk with medicines across regulated health and adult social care services. This did not include providers of online consultations over the internet or by other remote means, as we have previously reported on these services.
These six common areas are summarised as follows:
- prescribing, monitoring and reviewing
- transfer of care
- reporting and learning from incidents
- supply, storage and disposal
- staff competence and workforce capacity.