Donna Tucker left Midway Pharmacy with a bag of medications for a patient. What was unusual about this delivery was that instead of getting in a familiar gold Midway car to make the delivery, all she had to do was take the elevator to the second floor in Twin Lakes Regional Medical Center. The person receiving the medications was a patient getting ready to go home.
While at the hospital, and especially when a patient is getting ready to go home, he or she is told many things by the doctor, nurses, dietitian and social worker. Some patients are afraid they may not be able to remember everything needed to know to take care of themselves once they go home.
To help patients leaving the hospital, Midway Pharmacy has partnered with Twin Lake Regional Medical Center to offer a free Bedside Medication Delivery program. Midway Pharmacy can now deliver discharge prescriptions to patients or their caregivers at the bedside in the hospital room prior to discharge. It’s simple and easy to leave the hospital with everything patients need so they can return home.
Getting prescriptions filled before leaving the hospital is much more than just a nice convenience, according to Michele Vincent, MSN, RN, APRN-BC, Director of Quality at TLRMC.
“One leading cause of incomplete healing and re-hospitalization is patients not taking discharge medications as prescribed,” said Vincent. “It is very important to the health of the patient that they have their new prescriptions filled and take them as prescribed.”
The Bedside Medication Delivery program is for patients admitted to the hospital and includes new moms and their babies.
Once a patient leaves for home, their care is up to them and their family or caregiver.
“Having continuity of care as they transition home may mean the difference between complete healing and a complication and re-hospitalization,” said Vincent.
According to Trevor Ray, PharmD, with Midway Pharmacy, the Bedside Delivery Program makes it easy for a patient to have their prescriptions in hand before they leave the hospital.
“You don’t have to deal with the trouble of rushing to the pharmacy to get your prescription filled right after you leave the hospital,” Ray said. “We’re making it easier for patients to leave the hospital with everything they need.”
If a patient chooses to have their prescriptions delivered to their bedside they can still have future refills transferred and refilled at the pharmacy of their choice.
Even though patients are discharged from the hospital it does not mean they are completely healed and well. The healthcare models in the U.S. are pushing for fewer days in the hospital and more in outpatient care at home with your Primary Care Providers.
“When you leave the hospital you still need time to rest and recover and will not be capable to shop around. Hence, you would not want to wait in a long line at a local pharmacy as you transition from the hospital to home, nor would you want your family to have the burden of running multiple errands during this crucial time that they would be needed by their loved one’s side,” said Vincent.
The Meds to Bed program with Midway Pharmacy is something that can be initiated at anytime during a patient’s stay and can help assure that patients get the financial and educational assistance with their medications in hand prior to leaving.
“We strive to make sure all our patients’ needs are met while we have the capability of our patients being in our hospital,” Vincent said.
Patients only have to let their nurse know if they would like to have their discharge prescriptions filled and delivered to their bedside before leaving the hospital. It’s a simple process, and there is no additional cost to the patient.