While some individuals may be able to manage their medication on their own, other individuals you care for may require support to store and take it correctly. If an individual is capable of managing their medication safely on their own, you should encourage them to do this as it promotes their independence. Information on the medication support each individual requires will be in their care plan.
You also need to be aware of the main points of the agreed ways of working in relation to medication. These are:
- Ordering: the process should be quick and efficient.
- Receiving: a list of medication ordered should be checked against that received.
- Storing: controlled drugs (CDs) must be stored in a locked cupboard or might be kept by the individual if self-administering.
- Administering: ensure the right person receives the right dose of the right medication at the right time.
- Recording: use the medicine administration record (MAR) which charts the administration of drugs. Make sure the records are clear.
- Transfer: medication has to stay with the individual as it is their property, so if they are transferred the medication goes with them. (‘Staying with’ includes being kept in a locked cupboard if necessary.)
- Disposal: return unwanted medication to a pharmacy. Care homes must use a licensed waste management company
You should follow these main points above at all times when working in relation to medication to ensure the safety of the individual and other people involved.