The first NuPhaC meeting was organized in 2015. The idea to start the international NuPhaC network arose from the need in research, education, practice and policy for the representation of nurses in medication management, pharmacotherapy and pharmaceutical care. Nurses are insufficiently represented in pharmaceutical care related debates. Furthermore, we believe that there is a lot of potential to improve quality of care through interprofessional collaboration in pharmaceutical care. More evidence on the effects of nurses' contribution to interprofessional pharmaceutical care is needed. Interprofessional research is a strong fundament for interprofessional practice.
NuPhaC (Nurse and Pharmaceutical Care) is an expert consortium. In NuPhaC national and international researchers are gathered to collaborate on and strengthen research, practice, policy making and education on medication management and pharmaceutical care in nursing. NuPhaC is embedded in a network of stakeholders, including academic institutions, health care organisations, nurses in practice, physicians, pharmacists and nurse educators. Experts as well as stakeholders can represent different organisations. In NuPhaC joint forces increase possibilities and endorse pharmaceutical care in practice, with respect for the contribution of experts and stakeholders. In NuPhaC the expertise of nurses is translated to a unique collaborative landscape for interprofessional pharmaceutical care.
Various definitions and models on medication management have been published. Medication management includes medication handlings of professionals and patients. When defining medication management, authors tend to focus on their own professional group, responsibilities and perspectives. Our expert group starts from the nursing perspective and focuses on nurses’ role, yet, acknowledges the interprofessional context of medication management and therefore strives to always explicitly integrate an interprofessional approach. The following steps can be included in medication management: medication selection and procurement, ordering and prescribing, storage, preparing and dispensing, administration, monitoring, reporting, error/ safety management, interdisciplinary communication and collaboration, transmural communication and patient support, education and empowerment. Nurses spent a lot of time on medication management. The quality of medication management has an important impact on the outcome of the patient, health care providers’ work, safety, and costs. Topics such as drug monitoring, adherence and self-management are critical in achieving qualitative pharmaceutical care.
To be used in the name of the network, we have chosen for the concept 'pharmaceutical care'. Pharmaceutical care was defined by PCNE (Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe) as pharmacists' contribution to the care of individuals in order to optimize medicines use and improve health outcomes. As nurses have important responsabilities in caring for individuals, and we strive to optimize medicines use and improve health outcomes, this definition best suited our goals. However, in NuPhaC we focus on nurses' contribution instead of pharmacists' contribution. Medication management, pharmacotherapy and medicines optimizaltion are considered as parts of pharmaceutical care. We are aware these concepts are used in different ways in literature, interpreted differently in some countries.
The expert group aims to improve the quality of pharmaceutical care in nursing by connecting stakeholders in research, education, practice and policy making.
Within the network inductive and deductive questions on different levels of complexity, ranging from small scaled in practice projects to larger and more fundamental international projects, are addressed. Results are disseminated within the network and translated into evidence based policy recommendations. Scientific results will be presented in academic papers. Reports will be presented to professional magazines to reach a maximum impact of the findings.
NuPhaC, in collaboration with its partners, engages to organize an international NuPhaC symposium every three years. The symposium provides a cutting edge update on scientific insights in pharmaceutical care in nursing, as well as practical training sessions and discussion groups.
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NUPHAC is a consortium that, as a centre of knowledge and expertise, wants to be recognised by third parties as an expert with regard to the role of nurses in pharmaceutical care. NUPHAC will respond to this by translating the unique focus of nurses in the medication process into an interdisciplinary collaborative landscape. This makes NUPHAC an intermediary between the health care user, his environment and the care providers. As a reference network, NUPHAC wants to be a key player that makes a substantial difference in research, training and policy making in nurses’ pharmacological care.
As a key organisation, NUPHAC wants to provide stepping stones for passionate researchers and educators who want to optimise pharmaceutical care by bringing together research, education and policy making. NUPHAC offers a powerful environment to facilitate growth and embeds the latest insights in each of the three domains.
The intrinsic motivation of NUPHAC originates from questions in clinical practice on nursing care for improving the medication process in an interprofessional collaboration with nurses, doctors, pharmacists and health care users. Research and training are carried out with responsibility to society and should have a meaningful effect in promoting the quality improvement process.
NUPHAC transcends health care institutions and educational institutions and reaches out to third parties in Europe and beyond to contribute at various levels to the planning, operation or dissemination of findings on pharmaceutical nursing care.
NUPHAC engages to share knowledge, insights and skills about pharmacological care with committed professionals and the society in a sustainable and responsible way on demand or as an expert service. NUPHAC acknowledges that it has growth potential to gain recognition as a world player in nurses’ pharmacological care.