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Supporting GP practices with their acute prescribing

Published: | Primary Care

An acute prescription is medication given to treat a sudden and short-term condition, also known as an acute condition, such as antibiotics to treat an infection. They’re also used when starting a new medication if there needs to be a review before you start taking it long term. If it’s deemed beneficial to your health, it may end up becoming a repeat prescription.

Glasgow City HSCP’s (HSCP) Primary Care Improvement Team and Pharmacy Team ran a recent training session on acute prescribing improvement work within our GP Practices. This was in response to a survey where a fifth of Practice Managers had said they and their staff were interested in learning more about acute prescription management within their practice.

The session was led by Jenni Allardyce, HSCP Lead Pharmacist, South Locality, supported by Susan Ballantyne and Derek Jamieson from the North East Pharmacy team and Lara Calder from the Primary Care Improvement Team. Their teams can provide prescribing and general practice support.

Practice staff worked in groups and discussed acutes and reauthorisations work in individual practices, exploring the barriers and enablers of using counts on repeat prescriptions. They discussed quality improvement work that had been undertaken within their GP practices around acute prescribing. This included utilising Health Improvement Scotland’s (HIS) acute prescribing toolkit or the Primary Care Access Programme and the results of this. The impact of addressing processes for acute prescribing were discussed with regards to sustainability and the impact on practice workload.

Jenni Allardyce, Lead Pharmacist said “It was really useful to share learning and to understand how we can support GP practices with their acute prescribing going forward. We’re developing a recorded presentation based on the session that we’ll share with practices.

“In the post event evaluation, participants reported that they had found the event a valuable opportunity to network, meet GP practice colleagues and HSCP staff face-to-face, to share ideas and learn from colleagues.  The session also let the HSCP staff hear about the main acute prescribing challenges within practices.

“Participants agreed to take back what they had learned to their individual practices. HIS resources were also discussed and shared with staff and each practice considered their next steps and top priorities.

“Our Pharmacotherapy team will be taking forward feedback from the event and evaluation questionnaire, to support the acute prescribing training and delivery priorities.”

Feedback from participants included: “Great to hear processes other practices have in place” and "it was good to hear other practices experiences via group discussion and feedback.” 

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