Medicines Use Reviews (MURs)

Nurse testing hands

Medicine Use Reviews (MURs) were introduced in April 2005, with significant changes made in 2011. On 22 September 2014 further changes were announced as part of the 2014/15 contract changes. This page provides information about MURs as well as detailing the changes agreed. It will be updated with relevant information to support the implementation of these changes as it becomes available.

On 22 September 2014, changes to the MUR service were announced and include:

  • From 1 January 2015, a new target group for patients with cardiovascular disease or cardiovascular risk factors, who are prescribed four or more regular medicines
  • From 1 April 2015 an increase in the proportion of targeted MURs undertaken on patients in the target groups from 50 to 70 per cent in each financial year.

For more information please see the summary of 2014/15 Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework agreement.

The three existing target groups remain unchanged, they are:

  • patients taking a high risk medicine(s) (on a national list)
  • patients recently discharged from hospital who had changes made to their medicine(s) while they were in hospital
  • patients with respiratory conditions (such as asthma and COPD).

Pharmacists will still be able to use their clinical judgement to offer the remaining 30 per cent of MURs to patients who are not within the target groups, provided that they meet certain conditons. Currently each eligible pharmacy can perform up to 400 MURs per year. All patients receiving the service must sign the consent form.

The legal basis for the service is the Pharmaceutical Services (Advanced and Enhanced Services) (England) Directions 2013. These Directions have been amended a number of times since publication, including to make the changes that came into effect in January 2015 and the future changes planned for April 2015. The Amendment Directions will be published on the Department of Health Website when they become available.

The MUR service is intended to improve the patient's experience of taking their medications, maximise the benefits and reduce wastage.

This is achieved by establishing the patient's actual use and experience of taking their medicines, assisting in cases of poor or ineffective use, and working with the patient to resolve any problems (such as side effects) that may impact on effective use. In an MUR, the pharmacist will consider all the medicines the patient is taking, including those which aren't prescribed.

In January 2014, NHS Employers and PSNC published NMS and MURs - top tips for community pharmacies, giving tried and tested advice on overcoming some common challenges.

Changes to MUR data and reporting requirements

Details of MUR data and reporting requirements can be found on the Department of Health website. These requirements include:

  • the data that needs to be collected during the consultation
  • information to be sent to the NHS England area team (previously Primary Care Trusts) on request. For assistance completing this template please see the MUR data definitions document. 
  • a requirement to inform the patient's GP only if an issue has been raised that the pharmacist believes the GP needs to be aware of. A form has been produced for this purpose, developed by NHS Employers, Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) and the General Practitioners Committee (GPC) of the British Medical Association (BMA).

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