The Community Pharmacist Domiciliary Visit Service in Cornwall has been found to offer significant benefits to both patients and the NHS in an evaluation.
The service involves pharmacists visiting elderly housebound patients in their own homes and having relaxed, informal conversations. During the visits, the pharmacist assesses the patient’s adherence and understanding of their condition and treatment, and offers lifestyle support as well as removing unwanted medicines for safe disposal. The service may also involve education to help the patient use technology to self-monitor their condition or recognise signs of deterioration. An action plan is then drawn up, which is shared (with the patient’s consent) with the GP and any other relevant members of the healthcare team.
The evaluation showed that the service could reduce GP consultations and hospital admissions, as well as saving prescribing costs, reducing medicines waste and improving medicines optimisation.