Bristol-based Invatech Health has secured a major contract with Sanctuary Care, to roll out an electronic Medication Administration Record (eMAR) system across its national care home network.

Invatech won a competitive Europe-wide tendering process to provide its Atlas eMAR system to Sanctuary’s 90 UK care homes, the sixth largest operation of its kind in the UK.

The new relationship is set to improve safety, accountability and efficiency for Sanctuary Care’s 5,000 residents and its staff, as well as enabling closer working with local GPs and pharmacies.

The move also spells good news for independent pharmacists local to Sanctuary’s locations, who through Atlas have an entirely new business opportunity with a large care home provider, in a market previously dominated by high street pharmacy chains.

Sanctuary care homes were formerly supplied by one such chain but, with 40,000 prescriptions dispensed across the network each month, the new contract now offers half a million prescriptions per year to independent pharmacists in the UK.

In August, Invatech Health launched a new Patient Medication Record (PMR) system called Titan, following the first industry accreditation from the NHS in more than a decade.

Titan is an entirely new, innovative, cloud-based PMR solution capable of managing end-to-end workflow within pharmacies, to speed up the user experience for patients and practice owners alike.

Atlas and Titan are completely compatible and, following the contract award with Sanctuary Care, this new venture into the care home market furthers the revolution which Invatech hopes to bring to the independent pharmacy sector.

Tariq Muhammad, CEO at Invatech Health, said: “One of our major ambitions is to transform medicine management in care homes for residents and staff and working with Sanctuary Care, one of the biggest providers of care in the UK, is a major step towards achieving this.

“We also want to provide fantastic new opportunities for local independent pharmacists who for decades, were denied the opportunity to provide pharmacy services to large care home operators.

“So through the use of our technology, both at the care home and the pharmacy, we are able to connect Sanctuary’s care homes across the country to local pharmacies, giving great local service and improving local businesses whilst ensuring governance and control through the software.  We believe this model is a game-changer benefiting all stakeholders.”

eMARs offer significant safety and efficiency advantages over traditional paper-based methods, reducing paperwork and administration for staff and freeing them to spend more time delivering high-quality care to residents.

Atlas has been introduced on a pilot basis at two of Sanctuary Care’s homes – Brambles Residential Care Home in Redditch and Hastings Residential Care Home in Malvern – who have each worked with a local pharmacy to implement the system before it is rolled out more widely.

Dedicated training has been provided to staff through the implementation of the new technology to ensure a smooth transformation from the paper-based approach.

Jemma Robinson, Sanctuary Care’s senior programme manager, said: “Embracing advances in care home technology enables us to enhance the quality of care we provide and further enrich our residents’ lives.

“We have already rolled out a bespoke care planning app for our staff, and the next natural step in our digital journey is the introduction of an electronic medication management system, simplifying the process and making it more efficient for all involved.

“We conducted a robust tender process to identify the best possible solution for our needs based on whole market research and are pleased to be working with Invatech Health. We now look forward to the benefits this technology will bring to the nurses, carers and residents in our care homes.”