TCAM – transfer of care around medicines

TCAM is about supporting patients when they leave hospital

When some patients leave hospital they can need extra support taking their prescribed medicines. This may be because their medicines have changed or they need a bit of help taking their medicines safely and effectively.

If patients are identified by the hospital as needing extra support, they are referred through a safe and secure digital platform for advice from their local community pharmacist. This referral creates an important link with the Community Pharmacist who will discuss medicines with patients, answer any questions they may have and give individual information and support that patients need

Original work in the North East showed that patients who see their community pharmacist after they’ve been in hospital are less likely to be readmitted and, if they are will experience a shorter stay.

We are working with a number of NHS Trusts across Surrey and Sussex and KSS AHSN to help set up a secure electronic interface between the hospital IT systems and PharmOutcomes, the community pharmacy system used in this area.  This will provide patient data quickly and seamlessly to their community pharmacist.

  • TCAM went live from ESHT hospitals in East Sussex in April 2019 when we worked with East Sussex CCGs, East Sussex Heathcare NHS Trust, East Sussex CCGs and KSS Academic Health Sciences Network
  • Implementation across Surrey is phased, with referrals commencing from Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals and Surrey and Borders Partnership from 14 October 2019, followed by sRoyal Surrey  in December.  Epsom & St Helier and East Surrey Hospitals are currently looking to implement in the early part of 2020.

Despite not being mandatory, contractual and/or part of any commissioned service all three of our Local Pharmaceutical Committees (LPCs) encourage their contractors to participate in the TCAM pathway.

Our LPCs recommend that contractors look on PharmOutcomes about once-a-day to check whether they’ve had any referrals, and to deal with them as they think best according to their local procedures.

Read: TCAM position statement (revised 10 June 2019)

Update 12 June 2020

A Discharge Medicines Service (DMS) is to be added to the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework (CPCF) during 2020-21.  This new Essential service, which all pharmacy contractors will have to provide, was originally trailed in the 5-year CPCF agreement, with a formal announcement regarding the service made by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care in February 2020.

Read more: TCAM and the Discharge Medication Service (CPSS briefing note June 2020)


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