Help older patients by tackling overprescribing

Polypharmacy puts many older people at risk of serious side effects

Polypharmacy puts many older people at risk of serious side effects

  • Report shows medicines prescribed to older people in excessive numbers and unsafe combinations
  • Nurses, including non-prescribers, are well-placed to spot inappropriate polypharmacy
  • Reducing or stopping drugs can have important benefits, such as improved mobility and alertness

When Anna Mould sees a new patient at the acute hospital where she works as an older people’s mental health liaison nurse, one of the most effective things she does is check their medications.

Simply by reviewing what they are taking – or not taking – and rationalising it where required, she says she can make a huge difference to people’s health and their lives.

‘Her mobility improved, just with two drugs being taken away’

‘Quite often they’ve got two or three drug charts and you


Want to read more?

Unlock full access to RCNi Plus today

Save over 50% on your first three months:

  • Customisable clinical dashboard featuring 200+ topics
  • Unlimited online access to all 10 RCNi Journals including Nursing Standard
  • RCNi Learning featuring 180+ RCN accredited learning modules
  • NMC-compliant RCNi Portfolio to build evidence for revalidation
  • Personalised newsletters tailored to your interests

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?