Dr Emma Vardy

Important patient safety study at Salford

Salford Care Organisation is launching a study to promote proactive deprescribing for inpatients.

Ward L6 will take part in the feasibility study for the NIHR-backed CHARMER study, which is testing an approach to support geriatricians and pharmacists on deprescribing. Our organisation is one of just four in England to be involved in this phase of this important patient safety study.

Did you know?

  • More than 90% of older people take five or more medicines. Half of these patients are prescribed a medicine with a safety risk (Gallagher et al. 2011)
  • 5% of hospital admissions are from adverse effects of medicines, with the vast majority being older people (Pirmohamed et al. 2022)
  • Most patients and family members would have a medication deprescribed in hospital if suggested (Scott et al. 2019). Deprescribing drugs which are perceived to be problematic, or those which have limited evidence, can occasionally be met with resistance. Safety netting and negotiating a trial of suspending a medication is always a helpful first step.

The Principal Investigator for CHARMER at Salford Care Organisation is Professor Emma Vardy (pictured(. She said: “Deprescribing should not just be prompted by a clinical trigger, such a fall or adverse event, but rather a proactive activity in response to generalised concerns about polypharmacy, particularly when prescribed for our older patients. For this reason, pharmacists will be graduating as prescribers from 2026 and are being upskilled to advise on deprescribing.”

The study, supported by staff on the geriatric medicine ward and Trust pharmacists, will start on 26 September and aims to recruit 100 patients.

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