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Homecare Medicine Services

A Homecare Medicines Service (MES) is a term used to describe the delivery of certain hospital prescribed medicines directly to your home or alternative address that you choose.

In some cases there may be other types of support included such as nursing or teaching in the home environment.

Who will provide my medicines?

The homecare providers we use are private companies which are not part of the NHS or the hospital but have been chosen by us to provide this service to you. The actual homecare provider we use will vary depending on which medicine or treatment you are receiving.

Occasionally we may change the Homecare Medicines Service provider we use. This should have little or no effect on you. We always use tried and trusted homecare providers who can demonstrate years of experience in providing quality homecare medicines services.

The Homecare companies we use include:

  • Alcura
  • Baxter
  • Biodose
  • Bupa
  • Calea
  • Evolution
  • Fresenius
  • Healthcare at Home

What information will the Homecare provider know about me?

Your personal details (including: name, home address, contact details, medical condition and treatment) will be held on the provider’s highly secure computer network.

The homecare provider is bound by the same confidentiality rules as the NHS regarding accessible patient information (The Data Protection Act 1998).

You will be asked to agree, either in writing or verbally that you are prepared for a homecare provider to hold information about you and your medical condition.

The homecare provider will only contact you to arrange delivery of your medicines and they will only discuss your treatment with you or a member of the hospital team.

How will a Homecare Medicines Service benefit me?

Your medicines will be delivered directly to your home, or other safe and convenient place of your choice, at regular intervals.  This means you do not have to attend the hospital simply to pick up more medicines and can fit the delivery in with your normal life.

Whilst you do not need to come to the hospital for your prescriptions, you must still attend your routine clinic appointments as the hospital needs to monitor your health.  The hospital will not be able to continue homecare for you without these check-ups.

Are there any risks?

Homecare medicines services are considered by the NHS as a safe and convenient method of supplying your medicines. However, you should be aware of the small risk that your medicines don’t reach you in time which may mean you miss a dose.

To minimise this risk your deliveries will be carefully managed and scheduled, and contingency plans are in place for emergency deliveries should the need arise.

You can further reduce this risk by ensuring you have any required blood tests on time and attend all of your clinic appointments. Please also help by cooperating with the homecare provider by:-

  • being available for delivery at the times you agree with them.
  • monitoring how much medicine you have left.
  • informing them if you are running low.

How will my medicines be delivered?

Your delivery options vary depending on the type of treatment being delivered.

Deliveries are usually made by:-

  • Van delivery to your home
  • Van delivery to an alternative address that you choose. This could be your place of work or a named friend or relative’s address

You will always have to sign for your medicine, or someone whose name has been agreed in advance with the homecare provider can do this for you. The hospital will need this signature as “proof of delivery” to check the homecare provider has delivered the medicines as expected.

Who manages homecare at the hospital?

The Hospital Homecare Team is a dedicated team of experienced NHS pharmacy staff who manage and coordinate the home delivery of your medicines.

We work closely with your clinical team at the hospital and with the homecare providers to ensure a high quality service is provided.

The Hospital Homecare Team

  • Deputy Chief Pharmacist
  • Homecare Principal Technician
  • Senior Homecare Pharmacy Technicians
  • Finance and Administration Assistants

What do the Hospital Homecare Team do?

Once you have agreed to receive your medication at home and your clinical team completes the necessary paperwork, we will then manage your Homecare Medicines Service.

We will process your prescriptions and forward them to the designated Homecare Provider. We also monitor the service you receive and help resolve any problems that could affect your service.


Where are the Hospital Homecare Team based and how do I contact them?

We are based in the Pharmacy departments at York and Scarborough Hospitals.

The Senior Pharmacy Technicians are available from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday and can be contacted via the following methods:

Pharmacy Department
The York Hospital
Wigginton Road
York
YO31 8HE

Tel:     01904 726372
Email: HomecarePatients@york.nhs.uk


What happens next?

It can take a few weeks before you begin your treatment via the Homecare Service.  Your clinical team is aware of the process and will factor this time period in to your treatment plan.

Once you are registered with the homecare provider supplying your medication, they will send you a welcome pack which will include contact details and some basic information.  The pack will usually be sent by post or with your first delivery.

The homecare provider will telephone you to arrange your medication delivery and speak to you about any homecare nurse visits that might need to take place.

If a nurse from the homecare provider needs to visit you, he or she will contact you to arrange the visit. The nurse will either administer your medication or show you how to do this.


If I have a question who do I need to contact?

It is important that you know who to contact if you have a problem. This will depend on the type of question you have and the service you are receiving.

To change the date, time or address for your medicine delivery, or the arrangements for a nurse visit, contact the homecare provider directly on the number they have given you.

Normally any clinical issues concerning your care will need to be referred to the hospital and not your homecare provider.  For questions regarding your treatment or condition please contact your clinical team via the contact information they have given you.

For all other questions or problems regarding the homecare provider or if you are not happy about the service you have been receiving please contact your Hospital Homecare Team.

For out-of-hours queries you should contact your homecare provider on the 24 hour helpline number that they have provided.  However, if you require urgent medical advice you should contact your GP surgery, out-of-hours GP or NHS 111.

The Senior Pharmacy Technicians are available from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday.

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Visiting cancelled

Due to the increasing number of cases of coronavirus across the UK, York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust has made the decision to cancel all visiting to all its hospital sites in order to ensure the safety of patients and staff.

There are three exemptions to the ruling which are for one parent of a sick child under 18, for the partner of a woman giving birth and end of life patients at the discretion of the ward sister.

We would ask people to respect this decision and to treat our staff, who will be enforcing the visiting restrictions, with courtesy and respect.  For more information visit our website.


Outpatient appointments

We know that NHS services will come under intense pressure as the coronavirus spreads, and as a Trust we need to redirect staff, free up staff for refresher training and carry out any works as necessary, so we are able to maximise capacity for patients for when the number of infections peak.  We also need to reduce the number of people coming into our hospitals to protect our patients, as well as keeping our staff safe, well and able to come into work.

To do this, with effect from Tuesday 24 March 2020, along with other trusts in the Humber Coast and Vale partnerships, we have made the collective decision to suspend all non-urgent routine outpatient appointments for at least three months.  Urgent and emergency cases and cancer appointments will be carrying on as normal.

These are unprecedented times and we thank you for your understanding.  We know many people waiting for treatment will be disappointed or worried but please not contact the hospital as we will be contacting everyone directly affected in the coming days and weeks.

If you do not receive a letter or a phone call from the hospital, please turn up for your scheduled appointment as normal unless you have symptoms of coronavirus, a cold, flu or norovirus in which case you should contact us to cancel your appointment by clicking here.


Coronavirus (COVID-19)

If you have symptoms associated with coronavirus including a new continuous cough and a high temperature, you are advised to stay at home for 7 days.

Please do not book a GP appointment or attend your GP practice.

If you live with other people, they should stay at home for at least 14 days, to avoid spreading the infection outside the home.  After 14 days, anyone you live with who does not have symptoms can return to their normal routine.

But, if anyone in your home gets symptoms, they should stay at home for 7 days from the day their symptoms start. Even if it means they're at home for longer than 14 days. The most up-to-date public guidance is always online at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus

If your symptoms are serious, or get worse, NHS 111 has an online coronavirus service that can tell you if you need further medical help and advise you what to do.  Only call 111 direct if you are advised to do so by the online service or you cannot go online.