Discharge Medication Education

The following words from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) state clearly that if a patient is to be discharged from a hospital, the hospital is responsible for providing medication education to that patient in a format that is tailored to their individual learning requirements and that they may refer back to. 

There are a variety of tools and techniques that have focused on improving the support provided to patients who are discharged back to their homes. A comprehensive approach employing combinations of these techniques has been found to improve patient outcomes and reduce hospital readmission rates, including, but not limited to the following. 

·         Improved education to patients and support persons regarding disease processes, medications, treatments, diet and nutrition, expected symptoms, and when and how to seek additional help. Teaching methods must be based on recognized methodologies. CMS does not prescribe any specific methodologies, but examples include the teach-back, repeat-back approach and simulation laboratories.

The education and training provided to the patient or the patient’s caregiver(s) by the hospital must be tailored to the patient’s identified needs related to medications, treatment modalities, physical and occupational therapies, psychosocial needs, appointments, and other follow-up activities, etc. Repeated review of instructions with return demonstrations and/or repeat-backs by the patient, and their support persons will improve their ability to deliver care properly. This includes providing instructions in writing as well as verbally reinforcing the education and training.

Please take a moment and read the discussion recently posted at RxEconsult regarding this important issue:


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