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CPSI Share                                                  
5/16/2013 6:00 PM

More than 100 pharmacists, nurses, and quality and patient safety educators from Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta attended the All Aboard the MedRec Train workshop in Winnipeg, Manitoba on Wednesday, March 6, 2013. The information-packed day focused on preventing medication incidents through medication reconciliation (MedRec).  It was an opportunity for healthcare providers to connect and network on medication safety.

The workshop opened with a patient story, where Donald Lepp, a Manitoba postal worker, reinforced that effective communication and providing useful information builds trust.  Lepp’s three-week old son Russell was diagnosed with non-compaction cardiomyopathy. Lepp stressed the importance of building relationships with medical care providers to ensure consistency and continuity of care. He spoke about the experiences and challenges with managing their infant son’s medications and care, while in the hospital and for the transition to home.

Keynote speaker Dr. Robin Walker, Integrated Vice-President, Medical Affairs and Medical Education, St. Joseph’s Health Care and London Health Sciences Centre, provided an overview of implementing MedRec at the 900-bed hospital.  The presentation reinforced why MedRec is important and how it has made a difference for their facility. The session provided participants with a process they could readily take on to advance MedRec in their organization.

The workshop sessions featured presentations on MedRec across the continuum of care for cardiac patients; the use of quality tools to audit the MedRec process; collecting medication information for First Nations clients and the Circle of Care; and a panel discussion on the physician role in patient safety and MedRec. 

“The panel discussion was very insightful and will better inform our strategies to increase physician engagement in the MedRec process,” says Beatrice Patton, Patient Safety Pharmacist, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.  “The quality of the presentations provided food for thought, particularly when it comes to effectively communicating medication information for patients living in remote Northern communities. 

Rapid fire presentations showcased the MedRec work underway across Manitoba, in long-term care, acute care, community pharmacies, and e-health Manitoba.

“The workshop had a great vibe and spoke to the importance of a quality MedRec process to improve patient outcomes and safety,” says Heather Campbell, Patient Safety Coordinator, Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority.  “The rapid fire presenters highlighted the successes and challenges experienced by frontline providers when implementing MedRec across the continuum of care.”

Breakout sessions focused on patient engagement; the impact of amalgamation of healthcare regions in Manitoba and sharing the learning on the provincial MedRec process across the province; and opportunities in the intra-facility or cross-sector journey of a patient and their best possible medication history (BPMH).

“The workshop reinforced that everyone has challenges and to recognize that you have to be adaptable and respond to local needs and circumstances when implementing MedRec,” says Tannis Nickel, Director of Nursing, Haven Group (Southern RHA).  “Education is the key to getting quality information and the better the information, the better the outcomes. Your patients need to know that when it comes to medications, no matter how insignificant, it is important to tell your caregiver.”

The All Aboard the MedRec Train workshop was sponsored by the Manitoba Institute for Patient Safety, the Canadian Patient Safety Institute and Safer Healthcare Now!, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices Canada (ISMP Canada), and the Manitoba Pharmaceutical Association.  To download the workshop presentations click here, or visit and search for workshops.​