Medicines Optimisation


The Medicines Optimisation project, funded by the AHSN in 2013/14, has enabled the scope and complexity of future work to be expanded beyond short term projects.

The following resources provide an overview of the programme:

The Medicines Optimisation (MO) Programme is a collaborative vehicle directed by a steering group that incorporates members including Patients, Academia, Industry, Pharmacy, North of England Commissioning Support (NECS), Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and General Practice (GPs).

The inclusive structure of the steering group demonstrates the commitment of the MO Programme to working across sectors and disciplines as a means of producing innovative workable solutions to medicine related issues, including aspects of safety. It cuts across other AHSN clinical programmes with an aspect of medicines usage in addition to initiating specific MO and patient safety work.

In addition to initiating work to improve the health and wellbeing of the local population the MO Programme will seek to work with other AHSN programmes and projects through the AHSN NENC and the national Medicines Optimisation network.

Currently, there are specific projects that have been initiated and are directly managed by the MO programme. They are:

  • Clinical Handover – Each acute hospital in the region has access to refer patients on discharge to their chosen local community pharmacy for continued support with their medicines using existing NHS services. Early indicators show positive benefits. Future plans are to explore the use of electronic referrals with specific clinical conditions. A BMJ open paper has been published which indicates that patients who attend follow appointments with community pharmacists are less likely to be readmitted to hospital
  • Supporting Vulnerable Adults – A scoping exercise was undertaken across the region which has shown a high level of variation in pharmacist led medication reviews and varying amounts of resources dedicated to this work across the CCGs. The purpose of the exercise was to highlight the geographical variation of a service that has been proven to be beneficial in both patient health outcomes and financially
  • A Person Centred Approach to Medicines Adherence – developing a consistent approach to assessing the type of compliance support required.

It is anticipated that as these projects reach completion more will be added. We continually welcome ideas, please email for further information.

A Medicines Optimisation and Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme (PPRS) Roadshow was held in May 2015. This provided an opportunity to identify solutions to barriers that have been identified in the MO Programme to date and to formulate a plan of work going forward. The delegates included people who are influential both at a national policy making level in pharmacy and those who are in a position to influence the direction of travel within the healthcare system and pharmaceutical industry.

Medicines Optimisation Programme Resources

To find out more about the Medicines Optimisation Programme please contact the Programme Manager, Julie Fletcher: