Promoting patient safety through interprofessional collaboration

On March 28, UBC’s Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences and School of Nursing will host the sixth annual Interprofessional Medication Reconciliation Event (IP MedRec) at the UBC Vancouver campus, with distributed site participation in Victoria, Kelowna, and Prince George.

This landmark event draws over 750 participants each year from UBC medicine, pharmacy and nursing, as well as nursing students from UBC-Okanagan, UNBC and the University of Victoria. The event is also open to practicing pharmacists, with 8 pharmacists from community sites in Victoria, Kelowna and Prince George participating this year.

Participants at UBC's Interprofessional Medication Reconciliation Event.

Participants at UBC’s Interprofessional Medication Reconciliation Event. Photo credit: Ivan Yastrebov.

Medication reconciliation is a process by which members of a patient’s multidisciplinary health care team collaborate to identify a complete list of medications the patient is taking as they proceed through transition points in care.

This year — for the first time — the IP MedRec curriculum will include admission medication reconciliation content. This new content will equip participants with an understanding of the importance of accurately identifying medication taken at home upon arrival in the emergency department. The 2017 program will also include a mandatory safe medication order component designed by UBC’s Faculty of Medicine. This will ensure participants have a consistent understanding of how to minimize patient safety issues related to prescription writing errors.

“As part of Transition Into Clinical Education (TICE), second-year medical students will participate in this interdisciplinary medication reconciliation initiative, which will allow them to build an ongoing working relationship with other healthcare professional students early in their career,” says David Li, second-year coordinator and a Professor in Radiology with the Faculty of Medicine.

“The Safe Medication Order Writing component will teach students how to properly prescribe medication and look for ways to enhance patient safety,” adds Dr. Li.

According to Dr. Arun Verma, an instructor with the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences: “The IP MedRec event provides a valuable opportunity for our students to learn to interact with other key members of the healthcare team, and contribute their knowledge of medication effectiveness, safety, and value to decisions made by the team.”

The 2017 Interprofessional Medication Reconciliation event is co-coordinated by UBC Faculty of Medicine’s Drs. David Li, Mark Fok and Christie Newton; UBC Pharmaceutical Sciences faculty members Drs. Judith Soon and Arun Verma, with interprofessional facilitation by Jason Min; and UBC School of Nursing’s Elsie Tan and Fairleth McCuaig.

Facilitation at the UBC site will be by Drs. Mark Fok and Dan Martinusen, and Jason Min. At the distributed sites, facilitation will be provided by Dr. Richard Bachand (Vancouver Island Health Authority) and Dr. Margaret Manville (Island Medical Program), Robert Pammett (Northern Health Authority) and Dr. Catharine Textor (Northern Medical Program), as well as pharmacists Emma Kim and Dr. Barbara Falkner and Dr. Brandy Clement (Southern Medical Program). Jennifer MacMillan, Kathleen Crowley, and Nawal Lasfar in the Dean’s Office, UBC Faculty of Medicine, are also involved.