Unregulated Care Providers & Medication Management in the Community Care Setting

Senior with Care Provider

When people think about medication management, they often think of doctors, nurses, and pharmacists. But there are many others that play a key role in helping to administer medicine in community care settings. These people are referred to as unregulated care workers. Below we’ll talk about the role of unregulated care providers and the key role they play in medication management in senior care and community care facilities.

What are unregulated care providers?

Unregulated care providers play a key role in care facilities. They provide health and other types of care to patients and residents. 

An unregulated care provider (UCP) is someone who is not regulated. These can be employees of a facility. This can include:

  • Personal support workers
  • Doctor assistants
  • Personal aides
  • Care attendants

It can also be family members who provide care on a regular basis. 

What role do unregulated care providers play?

Unregulated care providers can assist with many tasks. What they do will depend on the facility and patient needs. Generally, it can include the following:

  • Mobility assistance
  • Personal hygiene support
  • Activities
  • Counselling
  • Taking vitals and collecting specimens
  • Administering medications

The Importance of Unregulated Care Providers & Medication Management in the Community Care Setting

One of the most important tasks, and often one of the most overlooked, is an unregulated care worker’s role in medication management. Taking the medication at the right time and dosage is essential for many people. Failure to take medication correctly could have severe consequences. 

According to the College of Nurses in Ontario, Nurses can assign duties to unregulated care providers. This is common in seniors’ homes, as unregistered workers take on more prominent roles. In many of these facilities, nurses take on more of a management role and other care providers execute the medication management with patients.

As outlined in Working With Unregulated Care Providers

“Increasingly, unregulated care providers (UCPs) assist with, or perform, certain aspects of care traditionally provided by regulated health care professionals. Nurses are often expected to teach, supervise or assign health care to others.”

Therefore, unregulated care providers are taking on an important role in medication management. They help to execute the strategy for engaging patients and helping them plan, take, refill, and manage their prescriptions. 

They do this in collaboration with nurses, pharmacists, family members, and others that are part of a patient’s care plans. Some of the duties include:

  • Administering medication
  • Check dosage accuracy
  • Adjusting dosage as advised by nurses
  • Ensuring medication is taken on time
  • Notifying nurses or the pharmacy of refill requirements
  • Following specific instructions related to medication administration

There are many people who play a key role in helping people in community care settings. Unregulated care providers are one. They play a key role in medication administration in particular.

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