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For further information on Drug Use Evaluation programs contact:

Claire Green
email: cgreen@nps.org.au
phone: +61 2 8217 8700
fax: +61 2 92117578

Drug Usage Evaluation

Go to DUE virtual tour

NPS Drug Use Evaluation (DUE) programs

Drug use evaluation (DUE) is a quality improvement activity which uses an ongoing cyclical process to improve Quality Use of Medicines (QUM) and health outcomes. It involves monitoring and reviewing drug use, evaluating and comparing it with best practice guidelines, and using multifaceted interventions to improve drug use and overall patient care – this cycle is repeated as often as necessary to achieve set goals.

NPS DUE activities focus on specific disease states or therapeutic areas for aged care facilities. These priority areas are chosen based on evidence of a therapeutic problem, variation in prescribing or adverse outcomes, and existence of best practice guidelines. New topics will be gradually introduced over time.


DUE kits available for aged care facilities

  • DUE of opioid therapy for chronic non-cancer pain
  • DUE of hypnotic medicines for the management of insomnia
  • DUE of Laxative use for chronic constipation
  • DUE of antipsychotic use in the management of dementia
  • Staff involved in use of medicines in aged care facilities can use these resources to undertake the DUE. A multidisciplinary team approach is ideal for successfully carrying out the DUE, preferably with an advisory team appointed to assist and advise during the program.


    Aims of the DUE kit

    • Determine the appropriateness of medicines for various therapeutic areas.
    • Provide nurses with everything they need to review current prescribing practice for a specific indication; the kit includes background materials, evidence based guidelines and information for residents and their carers.
    • To use specific data collection and evaluation tools to compare current practice against best practice guidelines.
    • To identify and act on opportunities for improving quality use of medicines.
    • Provide structured and useful feedback to promote best practice use of medicines in your aged care facility.


    What's in it for me?

    Completing this DUE will allow you to:

    • Identify opportunities for improving quality use of these drugs, and act on them.
    • Assist your aged care facility to meet components of the Residential Care Standards issued by the Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency, in particular
      • Standard 2.1 relating to continuous improvement activities
      • Standard 2.7 Medication Management where residents’ medication is managed safely and correctly
      • Standard 2.13 Behavioural management.
    • Comply with the Australian Pharmaceutical Advisory Council Guidelines for Medication Management in Residential Aged Care Facilities, in particular Recommendation 3 – Medication Review where residents' medicines should be reviewed by members of the health professional team.
    • Assist pharmacists to provide facility focused activities to promote the quality use of medicines (in line with Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Guidelines and Standards).

    This activity is recognised by a number of health professional bodies as contributing to continuing education and professional development.

    Royal College of Nursing, Australia (RCNA)
    This activity has been endorsed by APEC number 061110344 on behalf of Royal College of Nursing, Australia according to approved criteria, and attracts 15 Continuing Nurse Education (CNE) points. To be eligible for CNE points you must:

    • Provide your details on the DUE access page on the NPS website, including your professional membership number (where relevant).
    • Notify the NPS that you have completed this activity by submitting the evaluation survey 'What did you think about the DUE kit?' on the NPS website.

    Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA)
    This activity is recognised under the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) Continuing Professional Development and Practice Improvement (CPD & PI) Program (recognition number CR07-0025). Registered pharmacists who are PSA members are eligible for 25 CPD & PI points per year of the DUE.
    Australian Association of Consultant Pharmacy (AACP)
    This activity is recognised for 25 credit points per year of the DUE.

    Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA)
    This activity has been accredited by SHPA as suitable for inclusion in an individual pharmacist's CPD plan as outlined in the SHPA CPD program.


    Where to start

    1. Choose a specific DUE program from the list of currently available programs, register your details and download all the relevant DUE kit resources.
    2. Follow the steps in each phase of the DUE cycle shown below.
    Drug Use Evaluation Cycle
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