National Residential Medication Chart (NRMC)

The National Residential Medication Chart (NRMC) is a paper-based medication chart developed by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (the Commission) for use in residential aged care facilities.

Page last updated: 30 June 2017

The NRMC aims to improve the safety of medication management in Australian residential aged care facilities through standardised medication charting and improved medication management practice. It promotes Quality Use of Medicines and reflects the Guiding Principles for Medication Management in Residential Aged Care Facilities under Australia’s National Medicines Policy.

In addition, the NRMC enables the supply and claiming of most PBS/RPBS prescriptions directly from a resident’s medication chart, eliminating the need for a separate, hard copy of the PBS prescription, reducing the risk of transcription errors.

Benefits of the NRMC

The NRMC consolidates a resident’s medicines information in a single document, supporting accurate medicine reviews and improved quality of medicines outcomes.

A trial of the NRMC carried out by the Commission demonstrated a number of important benefits, including:
  • safer medication delivery with reduced errors;
  • a consistent approach to medicine prescribing, administration and supply across a variety of settings through standard intuitive design;
  • relevant medicine information captured within a single booklet format supporting an holistic and resident focus; and
  • a reduction in form duplication and administration costs.

Availability of the NRMC

The paper-based NRMC is currently available for use in residential aged care facilities. A copy of the NRMC, including printing specifications, is available on the Commission’s website, along with the User Guides and Trial Evaluation Reports.
Commercial, regulation compliant versions of the NRMC are also available for use. For commercial products, please check with your software vendor.

Further information

The NRMC Frequently Asked Questions and promotional flyer provide additional information about the NRMC: Word version - National Residential Medication Chart Flyer (Word 23 KB)
PDF version - National Residential Medication Chart Flyer (PDF 44 KB)

PDF version - National Residential Medication Chart - Instrument of Approval (PDF 5049 KB)
Word version - National Residential Medication Chart - Instrument of Approval (Word 48 KB)

Revised dispensing for nursing home residents

Commencing July 2017, pharmacists should include the RACFId (residential aged care facility identification number) for the nursing home each time a PBS/RPBS item is dispensed for all of the pharmacy’s nursing home patients.

The changes will make dispensing easier for pharmacists, as the RACFId will be used for PBS/RPBS supplies to all nursing homes. At present, the RACFId is only required for most supplies to nursing homes that have started using the National Residential Medication Chart (NRMC), or a commercial equivalent charting product that complies with PBS legislation.

Changes to pharmacy dispensing systems will make it easier for pharmacists to make this change. Pharmacists can obtain the correct RACFId numbers from each of the nursing homes they supply medicines.

These changes will apply to all PBS/RPBS items, whether they are part of a pharmacy’s PBS claim, or being supplied as under co-payment items. The changes are being made to help improve medication safety in the aged care sector, through data-driven quality use of medicines measures.

Word version - Information sheet - Revised dispensing for nursing home residents (Word 684 KB)
PDF version - Information sheet - Revised dispensing for nursing home residents (PDF 326 KB)

Background

The RACFId is also known as a nursing home’s RACSId.

Launched for national use in 2014, the National Residential Medication Chart (NRMC) is a medication chart developed for use throughout the residential aged care sector. NRMC implementation trials demonstrated improved medication management for residents, and reduced administrative burden for prescribers, aged care staff, and pharmacists when ordering, administering and supplying medicines.

The NRMC enables the prescribing and supply of most medicines, and PBS/RPBS claiming by pharmacists where applicable, directly from the NRMC without the need for a separate prescription to be written. However, certain medicines (“excluded items”) will still require a traditional prescription, in addition to an order on the NRMC, such as Schedule 8 medicines (Controlled Drugs) and non-streamlined PBS Authority items.

There are a number of commercial medication chart products available that are based on the NRMC and comply with PBS and state and territory legislation.