‘Everyone’ follows webinars on digital and safer medication management

‘We are pleasantly surprised at how many people are interested in our webinars on digital medication management. 1,500 people from various professional backgrounds have participated live since we started last autumn,’ say the organisers.

The webinar committee
Top from left: Anne Gerd Granås (UiO), Monika Johansen (E-health Research), Thomas Bäckstrøm (Østfold Hospital Pharmacies), Unn Sollid Manskow (E-health Research) and Astrid Johnsen (Hospital Pharmacies).

The first webinar on digital medication management went live in autumn 2020. Since then, more and more people have discovered the opportunity for a quick, professional and free refresher course in a very important area of healthcare.

Good quality and safety are central to patient care. However, incorrect use of medicines threatens patient safety. Despite the fact that digitalisation has begun in this area, every year patients die or are injured due to errors that occur when prescribing, preparing or administering medicines.

'Invited speakers have shared their experiences from practice and research on medication management, such as closed medication loops in Helse Vest and Helse Sør-Øst, eMultidose, and serious and fatal medication errors in hospitals, to name a few. The webinars have struck a chord with a surprising number of people, which we think is great! I initially thought that if we reached 30 people, that would be nice. But we've reached many more. At the last webinar, pharmaceutical reconciliation for LIS-1s, we set a record with as many as 200 logged on at the same time,’ says Professor of Community Pharmacy at the University of Oslo, Anne Gerd Granås.

    The other initiators agree.

    ‘It's valuable that specialised environments and researchers from all over Norway meet and share experiences. ‘I've noticed that people work differently with things in the regions. And there's an opportunity for us to help create best practice for various processes in digital medicines management,’ says senior researcher and head of department Monika Johansen at the Norwegian Centre for E-health Research.

    The head of Østfold Hospital Pharmacy, Kalnes, adds:

    ‘I've received a lot of good feedback from those who have participated in the webinars. They appreciate that we've created our own arena. Not least, it seems to be a good arena for people with a technology background who are not healthcare workers. ‘IT people can get a good insight into what's important in the pharmaceutical field. In this way, we build a bridge between people from the health sector and those with an IT background,’ says hospital pharmacist Thomas Bäckstrøm.

    New twist during corona

    Before the corona pandemic reached Norway, they had already established a research network for digital medicine management. Those behind it were Østfold Hospital, Østfold Hospital Pharmacies, the Department of Pharmacy at the University of Oslo and the Norwegian Centre for E-health Research. More collaboration and knowledge sharing is the goal.

    They managed to get together for a couple of physical seminars before all interaction switched to video meetings.

    When planning the first webinar, they had to take a few important things into account.

    'Clinicians and pharmacists said they didn't have time during the day to attend the webinar. Of course, this also applies to other professional groups with patient and customer contact. So we decided that the meeting would take place at 8.30 in the morning and last a maximum of 45 minutes,’ says Thomas Bäckstrøm.

      This gave many people the opportunity to participate, if not every time, then from time to time. Something else that was important was to post the recordings afterwards.

      From the start, many people asked if the webinars were recorded and posted online. ‘It's great that people who don't get to participate live can watch the recordings at their leisure when they have time. So far, we've had 1,500 live participants, but also 500 views afterwards,’ says Monika Johansen.

      A little anniversary

      The team is looking forward to webinar number ten, which will take place on Friday 12 March, on the topic of the healthcare platform and the introduction of a shared electronic patient record in Central Norway.They are so pleased with the good response from the audience that they will celebrate with a small piece of cake during the Zoom meeting, in different parts of the country.

      ‘It's been great that we've been able to share experiences across professional groups and that we have participants from all levels of the health service. People have also actively participated in the question-and-answer sessions.So it's clear that we need to celebrate this positive energy with some anniversary cake,’ says Anne Gerd Granås.