Impact of medication regimen simplification on medication incidents in residential aged care: Simpler randomized controlled trial

Nicolas Dugré, J. Simon Bell, Ria E. Hopkins, Jenni Ilomäki, Esa Y.H. Chen, Megan Corlis, Jan Van Emden, Michelle Hogan, Janet K. Sluggett

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In the SImplification of Medications Prescribed to Long-tErm care Residents (SIMPLER) cluster-randomized controlled trial, we investigated the impact of a structured medication regimen simplification intervention on medication incidents in residential aged care facilities (RACFs) over a 12-month follow-up. A clinical pharmacist applied the validated 5-step Medication Regimen Simplification Guide for Residential Aged CarE (MRS GRACE) for 96 of the 99 participating residents in the four intervention RACFs. The 143 participating residents in the comparison RACFs received usual care. Over 12 months, medication incident rates were 95 and 66 per 100 resident-years in the intervention and comparison groups, respectively (adjusted incident rate ratio (IRR) 1.13; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.53–2.38). The 12-month pre/post incident rate almost halved among participants in the intervention group (adjusted IRR 0.56; 95%CI 0.38–0.80). A significant reduction in 12-month pre/post incident rate was also observed in the comparison group (adjusted IRR 0.67, 95%CI 0.50–0.90). Medication incidents over 12 months were often minor in severity. Declines in 12-month pre/post incident rates were observed in both study arms; however, rates were not significantly different among residents who received and did not receive a one-off structured medication regimen simplification intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1104
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • Long-term care
  • Medication administration errors
  • Medication incidents
  • Medication regimen simplification
  • Nursing homes
  • Residential aged care

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