Aged CareMedicationQualitySoftwareTips for selecting medication management software


As the Aged Care sector continues to evolve, providers must take a proactive approach to ensuring their medication management system meets the organisation’s current and future needs.

With the release of the new Medication Management for Residential Aged Care Facilities Guiding Principles on November 28th 2022, providers should be taking steps to review the effectiveness of their medication system and consider the following tips when evaluating and/or selecting a system that aligns with current legislation and the organisation’s needs.


Our top 10 tips to consider


1. Enables Electronic Prescribing

Utilsing medication management software reduces risks associated with prescribing errors and allows for effective information sharing and communication between prescribers, pharmacies and those supporting the administration of medications.

Providers should consider how their medication management software system meets the legal requirements of electronic prescribing before implementing a system and during system reviews.

The medication management system should be designed to improve information sharing and streamline workflows for prescribing. It should include the Electronic National Residential Medication Chart (eNRMC), which can be used to legally prescribe, supply and claim any Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) medicines.


2. Medication Ordering

The system you utilise should have the capability to electronically capture and process medication orders to ensure that the correct medication is prescribed and dispensed. Also, ensure you confirm if the system has the capability to check and flag potential medication interactions and consumer allergies to prevent adverse events and improve consumer safety.

In addition, the system should have the capability to track the supply and delivery of medications as this will improve workforce efficiency and enable continuity in medication management. Providers should ensure the system can track the inventory of medications, including when medications need to be reordered, and keep track of when medications are delivered to the facility. By having this information readily available, your workforce can ensure that they have the necessary medications on hand to provide the best care to consumers.


3. Medication History Tracking

Check that the system can track consumers’ medication history and can provide a complete picture of the consumers’ medication regimens. The system should also track previous adverse reactions, along with other relevant information about the consumer’s medication history.

Utilising a medication management software system that can capture and store information regarding each consumer’s current prescribed medications and also, can easily access medication history, including dosage, frequency, and start and end dates will assist health professionals in making informed decisions about best practice medication management and ensure continuity of care.


4. Support Coordination of Care

By having access to the same information, healthcare professionals can work together to make informed decisions about medication management and improve the overall care outcomes for their consumers.

The system should allow for seamless communication and information sharing between doctors, pharmacies, and other healthcare professionals, to improve coordination of care. It should also allow all relevant parties to have access to the same information, such as currently prescribed medication, medication history, allergies, referrals and any adverse reactions the consumer has experienced.


5. Alerts and Reminders

Alerts and reminders are particularly useful for the administration of medications. Consider if the system has the capability to provide alerts and reminders for medication administration and prescription renewals. This will ensure that medications are ordered and administered as prescribed.

The medication management system should also alert healthcare professionals regarding medication interactions, allergies and timeliness of administration to reduce the risk of medication errors and adverse events.


6. Reporting and Analytics Capabilities

Reports and analytics should provide insights on things like medication trends, prescribing patterns, polypharmacy, antipsychotic and antibiotic usage along with areas where errors are likely to occur.

Providers can utilise this information to identify areas where improvements and medication reviews can be undertaken to ensure that the facility is compliant with current legislation. Also, consider if the system supports the requirements for reporting on the new Quality Indicators that come into effect on 1 April 2023.


7. Integration with Other Systems

Determine if the system can integrate with other systems your organisation utilises, such as electronic health records (EHRs), complete aged care software systems and pharmacy systems.

Integration allows for seamless information sharing, which will help to improve efficiency along with coordination of care resulting in improved care outcomes for residents.


8. Security and Compliance

The system should comply with relevant regulations, standards and guidelines, such as the Medication Management for Residential Aged Care Facilities Guiding Principles to ensure the protection of consumer data and maintain confidentiality.

You should check that the system has the appropriate security measures in place to protect consumer privacy and data integrity. System access should be monitored, and the system should be able to generate user logs and varying access permissions which are suitable to different user requirements.


9. User-Friendliness

By selecting a system that your workforce can easily adapt to, you will help to improve accurate system use and support aged care professionals to improve accuracy, timeliness and productivity.

Ensure the medication system is easy to navigate for both your workforce and external health care providers who utilise the system. Consider your workforce’s skills mix and ensure the system is intuitive and straightforward to use, with clear instructions and simple navigation.


10. Technical Support

The system provider should have good technical support with availability, responsiveness, and quality of support. Ensure that your medication management software provider has a dedicated support team, who can provide support and troubleshoot any issues that may arise.

Consider the working hours of available support to ensure it is accessible to your organisation’s needs. Also, consider troubleshooting response times in the event your workforce needs support out of hours.

The quality of technical support should be high, with the team being able to provide clear and concise instructions and resolutions in a timely fashion if issues arise.

As part of the revised Quality Standards, providers will benefit from focusing on continuous improvement in their medication management processes. Embedding an effective medication software system that supports aged care providers to improve care outcomes will enhance the likelihood of compliance. 


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