Canterbury community access to warfarin monitoring set to increase

Friday March 15, 2013

The Community Pharmacy Anticoagulation Monitoring Service (CPAMS) is kicking off in Canterbury with an information evening held this week at Canterbury Health Laboratories (CHL).
The Canterbury District Health Board has granted contracts to a further nine pharmacies in the region to provide close patient warfarin monitoring programmes.
This programme is a follow on from a trial to improve access to timely warfarin monitoring for affected patients, so they can get the correct dose of medication immediately, where previously there may have been a delay. 
Vanessa Buchan, CHL Quality Manager, says CHL is working with the pharmacies to ensure a safe service to Canterbury patients, by linking pharmacy results to the electronic health record and providing an enhanced quality control protocol.
“This is a system unique in New Zealand. Essentially we are providing these pharmacies with valuable support. Our laboratory already has a lot of experience in community patient warfarin monitoring through our relationship with rural and local GP practices, and are able to provide this experience and support to pharmacies through extra training, and vital diagnostic support,” Vanessa says.
“Ensuring results are reported on the patient’s electronic health record (eSCRV) allows health professionals to more fully understand the patient’s overall health requirements across the Canterbury Health System.”
The launch this week was an opportunity for staff from the nine pharmacies to come and hear about the extra quality control, meet the other pharmacies providing the service and have a look around the laboratory.
Warwick Kerr, St Martin’s Pharmacy owner, says initially he thought having the laboratory involved in this initiative would be frustrating, but the reality has been quite the opposite.
“The knowledge and training the lab has given us has been invaluable to becoming more proficient and confident in implementing this new service. With CHL involvement I feel far more confident that we will be able to deliver a more accurate, efficient and ultimately safer testing service to our warfarin patients,” Warwick says.
CHL were the first laboratory in New Zealand to gain international accreditation and New Zealand accreditation for Point of Care Testing. As a result of this accreditation, the pharmacies involved will be also covered by this accreditation.
CHL has considerable experience in delivering this type of point of care solution around warfarin testing; including winning the 2012 CDHB Quality and Innovation awards in the Improved Quality, Safety and Experience of Care section. This project was completed in conjunction with both Christchurch Hospital and Canterbury GP practices, Bealey 24 Hour Surgery, Halswellhealth and Kaikoura Medical Centre.
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Page last reviewed: 09 July 2013