Small talk with Selma Abed: Why medicines optimisation is so much more than just addressing cost efficiencies

We hear from our Head of Medicines Optimisation as she shares how the past 24 months have evolved the role of medicines optimisation within the NHS and what she thinks represents value today.

By on June 17, 2022

I have had a lot of conversations about how quickly so much has changed, especially when navigating our everyday workloads and routines. For me, the most significant transition has been harnessing the power of technology and data. With the shortage of capacity and resources, I have seen how much time can be repurposed back to the working day when processes are automated.

Capacity, Resource, Capacity, Resource…

In reality, medicines optimisation has become an even bigger priority for ICSs as the need to analyse population health has become vital to perform efficiently. But, like a predictable plot twist, conversations can orbit around pain rather than gain – we tackle this head-on with our proven Active Implementation to overcome those challenges positively.

We have an understanding and a heightened awareness of delivering and sustaining results even with shortages. Our frontline team do phenomenal work, so your GPs, nurses and pharmacists staff do not feel the strain of change.

Results that really matter

Due to repeated lockdowns, NHS ground staff are struggling to catch up on pre-dated treatments alongside patient volume. As a result, any internal strides made historically have become outdated or worse, mitigated. Time and time again we’ve seen processes have to restart due to undone changes, setting back regional teams thus lowering overall morale.

As a long-term partner, we have helped our clients weather the storm with fruitful processes that have maintained great results. The secret is simply that our offering is bespoke to every region.

Our holistic approach is collective, encompassing and results-driven. We believe in patient-centred care by ensuring we are continually available. In a nutshell, we Make Health Easy.

The value of the patient

I came into this field because I believe medicines optimisation should revolve around the patient and their choice. At Spirit, the work we do places the patient first and foremost in our line of vision. We design improvement factors around them to underpin their satisfaction, representing positive value to the NHS and the purpose of our work.

This thought alignment makes medicines optimisation an exciting and progressive field, it is challenging, but it has the promise to make a real difference to the NHS. So, whenever a new starter or someone in the industry wants to take the leap into our field approaches me, I tell them, ‘It’s all about the patient, and it always will be’.

Control what you can

We know that the landscape we work in is constantly changing; quite recently we have seen the emergence of the PCN role, and currently, all of NHS England’s CCGs are transitioning to ICSs. Changes present challenges, and I often get asked, ‘how can we plan?’

There’s no escaping change but when it comes to our role, I feel that we must focus on the objective and what we can deliver amongst varying influxes. What do we have access to? Where can we make efficiencies? Will we make an impactful change?

Our clients, whether within the NHS or in pharma, work with us because we simply deliver on what we say we do. We do not go off brief.

Process is Paramount

Looking from the outside in – analysing, interpreting and applying data sets can be a big challenge for regional Medicines Optimisation teams. We’ve all seen the positives of setting comparables, spotting and acting on emerging data trends from the pandemic’s fast-paced turnaround back to ‘normality’.

Working alongside different teams throughout the UK has placed Spirit Health at a unique vantage point. We recognised the need for digital automation and in doing so, developed an encompassing accessible tool – Spirit Evalua.

Spirit Evalua gives the power back to regional medicines optimisation teams as they can easily compare, contrast, measure, and analyse data sets on a local or national level.

Technology for today

Spirit Evalua will level the playing field for medicines optimisation teams nationally. The anticipation and excitement showcased by my clients and peers confirm the need for a portal of this nature. The potential scope in which this tool can aid multiple teams is phenomenal. It will be integral to day-to-day locality functionality.

I’m excited to see the results it will produce alongside the evolution the NHS will undertake because of this platform.

Selma Abed has worked within the industry for a number of years now, including two years within a medicines optimisation team in a CCG. Her hands on experience and understanding ensure our clients benefit from the delivery of what is promised. Working across CCGs nationally, Selma and her team are making positive strides when making efficiencies that count in medicines optimisation.

If you would like to learn more about how we can help you, please contact us here.

Approval Number: HEA4187JUN22

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