Quality standards for safe medication in nursing homes

Development through a multistep approach including a Delphi consensus study.

The aim of the study was to develop quality standards reflecting minimal requirements for safe medication processes in nursing homes.

In a first step, relevant key topics for safe medication processes were deducted from a systematic search for similar guidelines, prior work and discussions with experts. In a second step, the essential requirements for each key topic were specified and substantiated with a literature-based rationale. Subsequently, the requirements were evaluated with a piloted, two-round Delphi study.

We developed normative quality standards for a safer and resident-oriented medication in Swiss nursing homes. Altogether, 85 requirements define the medication processes and the behaviour of healthcare professionals. A rigorous implementation may support nursing homes in taking a step towards safer and resident-oriented medication.