Medication management roles in assisted living

J Gerontol Nurs. 2014 Jun;40(6):42-53. doi: 10.3928/00989134-20140211-02. Epub 2014 Feb 19.


Residents in assisted living (AL) frequently need assistance with medication management. Rooted in a social model, AL serves people facing increasing health management challenges as they "age in place." This study explored roles in AL medication management and satisfaction with unlicensed assistive personnel (UAP) as medication aides, a cost-effective staffing approach that is used frequently. The sample included 112 participants representing all parties involved in medication administration (residents, medication aides, administrators, RNs and licensed practical nurses, pharmacists, and primary care providers) in 15 AL settings in four states. Results include description of medication management roles; empirical validation of existing AL nursing professional standards; and satisfaction with the role of UAP as medication aide from all perspectives. Clinical implications include creating a supportive environment for medication aides (i.e., UAPs); the importance of the RN role as facilitator of AL medication management; and the need for collaboration and interprofessional team development across disparate settings.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Assisted Living Facilities*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medication Adherence
  • Medication Systems / organization & administration*
  • Nurse's Role*
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Self Medication*