Optimising drug use in older people through patient-centered decision support

The miniQ EIT Health project consists of four core partners; Karolinska Institutet, the University Hospitals of Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust / West Midlands Academic Health Science Network, the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (LifeSTech research group) and the Servicio Madrileño de Salud (SERMAS); one associate partner, the GENESIS Biomed, a consultancy firm in the biomedical healthcare sector; and one project partner, the Swedish company Quality Pharma Medtech International AB.

Inappropriate medication and other drug-related problems in elderly people is a major public health issue. miniQ aims to optimise drug treatment among elderly people through a patient-centred decision support system. miniQ is a web-based system that can be integrated with existing electronic medical record softwares. The miniQ system monitors drug use in elderly people, based on established quality criteria, and can be used to aid drug prescription and drug utilization reviews. The system is also accessible by physicians, nurses, patients, relatives, pharmacists and clinical pharmacologists, ensuring that drug-related problems can be quickly identified and resolved.

Today miniQ is implemented in several parts of Sweden. Therefore, the objective of miniQ EIT Health project was to adapt and disseminate the miniQ system to other European settings, starting with the UK and Spain. The work includes translating the softwares, adapting to other sets of quality criteria, national drug formularies and services and integrating with existing electronic medical record systems.

A pilot was conducted to validate a miniQ proof-of-concept involving patients, their caregivers and healthcare professionals from primary care. The involved users used the different modules of miniQ system and provided feedback about the tools in terms of usability, user experience, results assessment and understanding, and use of the tools in the clinical practice.