Care Certificate 13.5a Answers

Care Certificate 13.5a Answers

Care Certificate Standard 13 Answers - Health and Safety

Care Learning

5 mins READ

This guide will help you answer The Care Certificate Standard 13.5a Describe the agreed ways of working in relation to medication.

The Care Certificate, specifically Standard 13.5a, outlines the “agreed ways of working in relation to medication.” This guideline ensures safe practices and promotes efficiency in care delivery. Let’s delve into the specifics of this standard.

Importance of Adhering to Medication Guidelines

Administering medication involves critical responsibilities. Errors can lead to serious health consequences for service users. Therefore, it’s essential to follow agreed ways of working when it comes to medication management.

Medication Policies and Procedures

Organisational Policies

Every organisation in the health and social care sector has its own medication policies. These policies establish clear rules on how professionals should handle medications. Ensure you get familiar with your organisation’s policies.

National Guidelines

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) provide national guidelines. These guidelines set the benchmark for safe medication practices. You must align your organisational policies with these national standards.

Key Components of Agreed Ways of Working

Prescription Management

All medications should come from an authorised prescriber. This could be a doctor, nurse prescriber, or a pharmacist. Always double-check the prescription to ensure accuracy.


Store medications safely and securely. Many medications need specific conditions like refrigeration or controlled temperatures. Always lock medications away, except when in use.


Follow the “Five Rights” of medication administration:

  1. Right Person: Confirm the identity of the service user.
  2. Right Medication: Double-check the medication and its expiry date.
  3. Right Dose: Ensure the dose matches the prescription.
  4. Right Time: Administer at the correct time.
  5. Right Route: Follow the correct method of administration (oral, topical, etc.).

Some organisations add the “Right Documentation” as a sixth right. This ensures that all steps are logged accurately.

Record Keeping

Document every action you take related to medication. If you administer it, record it immediately. If the service user misses a dose, note the reason. Accurate records contribute to safer care and are essential for legal compliance.


Unused or expired medications need proper disposal. Follow your organisation’s procedure for this. Never throw medications in the bin or flush them down the toilet as they can have harmful environmental effects.

Consent and Capacity

Informed Consent

Before administering medication, gain informed consent from the service user. Explain what the medication is for and any potential side effects. This respects their autonomy and promotes trust.

Mental Capacity Act

If a service user lacks the capacity to consent, follow the Mental Capacity Act (2005). Conduct a capacity assessment, and if necessary, involve family members or legal representatives in decision-making.

Reporting and Accountability

Incident Reporting

Mistakes can happen. If you make an error or encounter an issue, report it immediately. This transparency helps in improving processes and preventing future mistakes. Always fill out an incident report form.

Audits and Inspections

Expect regular audits and inspections. These checks are essential to ensure compliance with both organisational and national guidelines. Be prepared and keep your records up-to-date.

Training and Competency

Continuous Professional Development

Stay updated with your training. Most organisations require annual refreshers on medication management. This keeps your skills sharp and ensures you stay compliant with the latest guidelines.

Competency Assessments

Many organisations will assess your competency regularly. This might involve observing you while you administer medication or having you complete a written test. Pass these assessments to show your competence.

Safe Handling of Different Types of Medication

Controlled Drugs

Controlled drugs have strict regulations due to their potential for misuse. Always follow the law and your organisational policies. Count and document these medications accurately and frequently.

Over-the-Counter Medications

Even non-prescription medications can be risky. Always consult the service user’s primary healthcare provider before administering over-the-counter medications. Record these as you would prescription medications.

Specialist Medications

Some medications, like insulin or blood thinners, require special handling. Ensure you’re trained and competent in administering these. Follow specific protocols and monitor the service user closely for any adverse effects.

Communication and Teamwork

Clear Communication

Communication is crucial in team settings. Always hand over important information during shift changes. Use clear, unambiguous language to avoid misunderstandings.

Working with Other Professionals

Involve pharmacists, doctors, and nurses in the care plan. Multidisciplinary teamwork promotes better outcomes for service users.

Ethical Considerations


Keep all medication records confidential. Share information only with those directly involved in the service user’s care. Respect service users’ privacy.

Dignity and Respect

Administer medications respectfully. Never rush or force a service user to take their medication. Their dignity and comfort should always be top priorities.

Example answers for activity 13.5a Describe the agreed ways of working in relation to medication

Here are example answers for a care worker completing the unit on medication under The Care Certificate Standard 13.5a.

Example Answer 1: Prescription Management

“In my role, I always ensure that all medications come from an authorised prescriber such as a doctor or a nurse prescriber. Before administering, I double-check the prescription to make sure it matches the service user’s medication chart. This reduces the risk of errors and ensures that the correct medication is given.”

Example Answer 2: Storage

“I understand the importance of storing medications safely and securely. In my workplace, we follow strict guidelines for medication storage, making sure that some are kept in a locked cupboard and others in the fridge if required. By doing this, I help maintain the effectiveness of the medication and prevent unauthorised access.”

Example Answer 3: Administration

“While administering medication, I always follow the ‘Five Rights’: Right Person, Right Medication, Right Dose, Right Time, and Right Route. For example, before giving oral medication, I confirm the service user’s identity with their photo ID and double-check the medication label against the prescription. This ensures the medication is administered as prescribed.”

Example Answer 4: Record Keeping

“I make it a point to document every action I take related to medication. After administering a dose, I immediately update the service user’s medication chart. If a service user refuses a dose or if there’s an error, I record it accurately and inform my supervisor. This ensures that everyone on the care team has up-to-date information.”

Example Answer 5: Consent and Capacity

“Before giving any medication, I always explain what it is for and ask for the service user’s consent. If the service user lacks capacity to consent, I follow the guidelines of the Mental Capacity Act (2005). I assess their capacity and if required, consult with family members or legal representatives to make an informed decision in the best interest of the service user.”

Example Answer 6: Reporting and Accountability

“If there is an error or any issue with medication, I report it immediately. For example, if I discover a dosage error, I fill out an incident report form and inform my supervisor straight away. This transparency helps to improve our practices and ensures the safety of the service users. We also have regular audits to ensure compliance with standards.”

These answers showcase a care worker’s understanding and adherence to safe medication practices in line with The Care Certificate Standard 13.5a.


In health and social care, agreed ways of working in relation to medication are crucial for both safety and effectiveness. Strict adherence to organisational policies, national guidelines, and ethical principles ensures the well-being of service users. Always follow the Five Rights of medication administration, maintain accurate records, and report any issues promptly. Regular training and competency assessments will help you stay proficient. By prioritising clear communication and respecting confidentiality, you contribute to a safe, efficient, and compassionate care environment.

In summary, handling medication responsibly is a cornerstone of excellent health and social care. By following the agreed ways of working, you help to ensure quality care and build trust with service users. Always stay informed, remain vigilant, and adhere to best practices. Your diligence can make a significant difference in the lives of those you care for.

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