DOI: 10.1093/ageing/afad246.020 ISSN: 0002-0729

1959 De-prescribing within the East Kent Community Frailty Team: assessment of medication review processes and potential cost-savings

A J D Jones, M Bristow-Smith
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Aging
  • General Medicine



Older people living with frailty are often prescribed many medications exposing them to potential medicine-related harm. Pharmacists are a new addition to the East Kent Community Frailty Team, which otherwise consists of doctors and advanced clinical practitioners at various levels of training. Pharmacists are ideally placed to develop medication review processes and support fellow clinicians with deprescribing efforts in frailty. This audit set out to determine current levels of medication review and associated cost-savings through deprescribing.


All patients admitted to the frailty team caseloads in the month of May 2023 had their notes manually reviewed for evidence of medication reconciliation, review, and deprescribing. Medicines were assigned a cost price based on the NHSBSA Drg Tariff (May 2023).


192 patients were seen in total, 170 of whom were acutely unwell. 62% of patients had their medication documented, taking an average of 8.2 medicines. The majority of omissions were patients with a zero length-of-stay, which include advice calls. 29% of patients had at least one medication stopped, representing an average 0.7 medicines stopped per patient seen. The monthly cost of medications stopped was £690. There were greater levels of deprescribing in the caseloads with MDT board rounds.


Rates of deprescribing are low compared to published studies (Ibrahim et al, BMC Geriatr 21, 258 (2021)), although still represent a rolling saving of approximately £8,000 per month on cost of medicines alone, assuming a twelve-month average life expectancy. Lack of standardisation of clinical notes and documentation made data collection difficult and has the potential to lead to transfer-of-care errors. Further work needs to be undertaken to optimise the medication review process and address inappropriate polypharmacy and will be the focus of efforts over the coming year.

More from our Archive