A new initiative to improve the transfer of care of patients’ medication records between settings has been used by more than 900 patients since it was launched last year.

KSS AHSN has been leading the implementation of the Transfer of Care Around Medicines (TCAM) pathway across Surrey and Sussex.

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.

The transfer of care process between care settings is also associated with an increased risk of harm, with 30-70% of patients experiencing unintentional changes to their treatment, or an error being made because of a miscommunication.

TCAM aims to keep patients safe when they transfer between care settings, providing a seamless transfer of a patient’s medicines information on discharge directly from the hospital to the patient’s choice of community pharmacy.

TCAM was launched in East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (SHT) in April 2019, and since then three more Surrey-based trusts have joined.

  Total live Trusts Referred Completed Completion rate
2019/20 Q1 1 109 89 81.7%
2019/20 Q2 1 101 83 82.2%
2019/20 Q3 3 278 218 78.4%
2019/20 Q4 4 321 225 70.1%
2020/21 (COVID-19) 4 125 63 50.4%
Total 4 934 678 72.6%


Lisa James, Senior Programme Manager for Medicines Optimisation at KSS AHSN, said that COVID-19 had impacted on referral rates, with this initial drop mirrored across England.

“We are now recording an increase in TCAM referrals again as acute trust activity increases in the new financial year,” she added.

“The demand for AHSN support to implement TCAM has increased over the COVID-19 period as trusts recognise it is supportive activity for efficient discharge.

“We are already working with five further trusts across Kent and Medway, Surrey and Sussex to implement TCAM, and we are also looking to extend the programme to include referrals to Care Home Pharmacy Teams to support local Care Home initiatives.”