Home Health & Hospice

Q: What are the steps for a proper medication reconciliation process?

Homecare Insider, April 15, 2013

Q: What are the steps for a proper medication reconciliation process?

A: In homecare, medication reconciliation is a process in which healthcare providers partner with patients to ensure accurate and complete medication information during transitions of care and throughout the care delivery process. Reconciliation requires a medication history and current medication orders to enable identification and resolution of issues and discrepancies. This process is challenging, and it’s common for medication errors to occur during transitions of patient care. So, it’s essential that accurate and consistent communication take precedence during the transition process in order to prevent medication errors and ADEs.

Medication reconciliation should involve the following steps:

  • Obtain a current list of all medications, including over-the-counter medications and nutritional supplements
  • Review the medications for accuracy related to ­dosages, administration times, frequency, and routes
  • Identify and resolve all interactions and ­discrepancies
  • Assess the patient’s understanding of the disease process, medications, and complications
  • Review the patient’s medications and possible side effects, and educate the patient regarding the ­medications
  • Document any changes and provide the patient with an updated, current copy of the medication list

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