Ordering medicines for people in care homes

Ordering medicines is an important part of the work of staff in a care home. Medicines belong to individual people living in care homes and must not be shared between residents, even if 2 of them are taking the same medicines.

It is important that a care home doesn't run out of a person's medicines. For this reason, care home staff should have time set aside for ordering medicines. Care homes should have at least 2 members of staff who have the training and skills for ordering medicines, although at any given time ordering can be done by 1 member of staff. Staff should check the medicines they receive against the original order to make sure that all medicines needed have been prescribed and supplied and that all records are kept up-to-date.

Care homes should be responsible for ordering medicines from GP practices and should not pass this responsibility to the local pharmacy.