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P-128  “En suite drugs”: quality improvements in medicines management
  1. Tara Schrikker
  1. St Wilfrid’s Hospice, Eastbourne, UK


Background The hospice introduced the practice for controlled and non-controlled drugs to be stored and administered from the Patient Own Drug (POD) cupboards located within patients’ bedrooms. Further recommendations were addressed after initial implementation to strengthen patient safety.

Aims and objectives What was the aim of the work?

Increase Productivity and Clinical Effectiveness

For timely medication rounds as staff remain in the patients’ rooms at point of administration.

Enhanced Patient Experience

Staff remaining within the patients’ rooms provides a visible, reassuring presence.

Quality Improvement and Safety

For stock levels to be tailored to patient need ensuring cost effectiveness

Storing patient’s own controlled drugs in PODS reduces the risk of administration incidents.


  • Proposal presented to Clinical Governance Committee to introduce PODs in patients’ rooms, storing controlled and non-controlled medication.

  • Medicines Management Group guided implementation

  • Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) informed of the proposed changes in practice, including the financial implications.

  • POD cupboards redesigned and controlled drug cabinets installed to meet legislation and compliance.

  • Training sessions held to support staff during change to practice.

  • Second phase of implementation included administration of oral controlled drugs from PODs.


  • Clinical staff have reported improvement with timely medication rounds.

  • Audits found a reduction in the time between the actual prescribed time and patients receiving their oral modified release opioids.

  • Patient focused to allow continuation of their preferred administration times.

  • Promotion of enabling patients to retain control and independence of their medications.

  • Improvement in the management of drug stock levels.

  • Decrease in number of related medication incidents in comparison to the previous year.

Conclusion This quality improvement involved all levels of the hospice team. The successful implementation required engagement with stakeholders, including the CCG. The focus of improved patient experience, safety, and clinical effectiveness was maintained. The innovation allowed a greater focus on enabling patients’ to maintain their independence in managing their medicines.

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