Guidelines, Resources and Links

HMR Aims & Objectives

The Home Medicines Review (HMR) programme aims to enhance the quality use of medicines and reduce the number of adverse medicines events through a comprehensive medication review conducted by an accredited pharmacist in the patient’s home.

The objectives of an HMR are to:

  • Achieve safe, effective, and appropriate use of medicines by detecting and addressing medicine-related problems that interfere with desired patient outcomes;

  • Improve the patient’s quality of life and health outcomes using a best practice approach, that involves cooperation between the general practitioner, pharmacist, other relevant health professionals and the patient (and where appropriate, their carer);

  • Improve the patient’s, and health professional’s knowledge and understanding about medicines;

  • Facilitate cooperative working relationships between members of the health care team in the interests of patient health and wellbeing; and,

  • Provide medication information to the patient and other health care providers involved in the patient’s care.

HMRs are only available following a referral from the patient’s GP. The patient may choose to be referred to their usual community pharmacy or an accredited pharmacist who meets the patient’s needs.

HMR Patient Eligibility

In order for a patient to be eligible for an HMR, they must be a current Medicare/DVA cardholder, live in a community setting and be at risk of experiencing medication misadventure. The patient’s GP must confirm that there is an identifiable clinical need and the patient will benefit from an HMR. In-patients of public and private hospitals or day hospital facilities, care recipients in residential aged care facilities and permanent residents of a Government Funded Facility are ineligible for an HMR.

Eligible patients will normally display one or more of the following risk factors known to predispose people to medication related adverse events:

  • Currently taking five or more regular medications

  • Taking more than 12 doses of medication per day

  • Significant changes made to medication treatment regimen in the last three months

  • Medication with a narrow therapeutic index or medications requiring therapeutic monitoring

  • Symptoms suggestive of an adverse drug reaction

  • Sub-optimal response to treatment with medicines

  • Suspected non-compliance or inability to manage medication related therapeutic devices

  • Patients having difficulty managing their own medicines because of literacy or language difficulties, dexterity problems or impaired sight, confusion/dementia or other cognitive difficulties

  • Patients attending a number of different doctors, both general practitioners and specialists, and

  • Recent discharge from a facility / hospital (in the last four weeks)

HMR Pharmacist Accreditation

Pharmacists in the HMR program are required to be Medication Management Review (MMR) Accredited. Training is available through the Australian Association of Consultant Pharmacy or Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia.

Pharmacists must also be approved by the Pharmacy Guild to perform HMRs. Application for registration as an approved service provider must be submitted via the 6CPA Registration and Claiming portal.

Service providers must accept and abide by the 6CPA General Terms and Conditions and the HMR Programme Specific Guidelines.

HMR Claiming

Services are payable to approved service providers for each HMR conducted after a referral by a GP. The payment rate for an HMR service conducted on or after the 1st July 2015 is $210.93, this amount is indexed annually. From 1 March 2014, pharmacist claims for payment must be submitted through the 6CPA Registration and Claiming portal.

Clinics are eligible for a Medicare fee of $154.80 under Medicare Benefits Schedule Item 900 where a GP:

  • Assesses a patient’s medication management needs, and following that assessment, refers the patient to a community pharmacy or an accredited pharmacist for an HMR, and provides relevant clinical information required for the review, with the patient’s consent; and

  • Discusses with the reviewing pharmacist the results of that review including suggested medication management strategies; and

  • Develops a written medication management plan following discussion with the patient.

Benefits under this item are payable not more than once in each 12 month period, except where there has been a significant change in the patient’s condition or medication regimen requiring a new HMR.

Recent Changes to 6CPA

From 1 March 2014 a number of changes occurred across Sixth Agreement Medication Management Programmes:

  • A cap on the number of HMRs that can be delivered by a service provider and an accredited pharmacist of 20 per calendar month;

  • A limit of 90 days from the date of the referral from a General Practitioner to when an HMR may be conducted;

  • A timeframe of 24 months (2 years) between additional HMRs for a single patient;

  • A timeframe of 30 days from the date of service (patient interview) applies when claiming HMR services.

In addition, the Department and Guild have agreed to continue work to explore changes to MBS referral criteria for Item 900 (Home Medicines Reviews) to ensure these services are appropriately targeted to people who would most benefit from the service.

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