Mistura Informatics Limited

Highlighting best practice as a representative in The Parliamentary Review

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Mistura Informatics Limited is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.


Dr Dawn Price, Managing
Director and Co-founder
Health Service Journal Award 2017
Finalist: Improving Care with Technology
Mistura Enterprise Limited and Mistura Informatics
Limited are software developers of medicines
information and medicines adherence applications
and are based in Ashington, Northumberland. Mistura aims to
increase patient awareness of the balance between the benefits
and the risks of medication taking and the consequences of
non-adherence. They address this through expert informational
material to engage patients, increase knowledge and promote
patient empowerment. Co-founders Dr Dawn Price and Prof
Stephen Bazire MBE provide insight into how the companies are
delivering technology solutions to address these issues.
The most important healthcare intervention for treating and preventing many
diseases is the provision of medicines, with an annual NHS spend of £17.4 billion;
however, up to 50 per cent of people fail to take medications as prescribed.
Manufacturers’ patient information leaflets (PILs) are the primary cause of non-
adherence, as the information provided can be frightening and cause anxiety in
patients, leading to an estimated loss of £900 million in wasted medicines.
On the other hand medicine taking does have risks, with adverse reactions costing
£530 million in hospital admissions and responsible for around 700 deaths per year.
Tackling patient understanding of their medicines is key to improving adherence and
can prevent hospital admission from adverse reactions. This is further complicated by
unsafe practice whereby important facts about medicines are not always provided.
For example, in 2017 in the UK 20,000 children were harmed when parents were
not made aware of the risks of taking the epilepsy drug Valproate, and dozens of
fire deaths across England were linked to the unsafe use of paraffin skin creams. Our
unique company structure combines the creation and management of up-to-date
»Managing Director and Co-
founder: Dr Dawn Price
»Director of Content and
Co-founder: Professor Stephen
Bazire MBE
»Founded in 2008
»Based in Ashington,
»No. of employees: 25 by 2020
»Services: Developer of medicines
information and medicines
adherence applications
»Company values: To improve
safety, efficiency and health
outcomes in relation to
»Customers: NHS, private
and third-sector healthcare
organisations in the UK,
Australia and New Zealand
»Research: Ensuring usable
systems with positive health
Mistura Enterprise Limited and
Mistura Informatics Limited
Highlighting best practice
medication information authored
by national healthcare experts,
within specially designed software
applications. Patients need this
independent expert service as online
information is commonly inaccurate,
out of date and often funded by
advertising or drug companies.
Our values are to build high quality
medicines information applications
that save the NHS time and
money whilst improving patients
knowledge and understanding that
leads to empowerment and better
Mistura Enterprise Ltd (trading
as Choice and Medication)
Mistura’s first development was
a website containing detailed
information on 160 medicines and 22
mental health conditions, delivered
as the Choice and Medication (C&M)
website, plus over 1,000 printable
leaflets. When a health organisation
subscribes to the portal, C&M brands
the expert information so that it
appears to patients as their healthcare
provider’s own website. Within the
UK, subscribers include almost all
mental health trusts, many third-sector
providers, criminal justice organisations
and single-handed mental health
practitioners. Across the globe, similar
success was achieved by providing
C&M to organisations in Australia and
New Zealand for use by their patients.
As information leaflets on C&M are
available in 16 different languages,
portal subscriptions continue to grow.
Mistura Informatics Ltd
Following the success of C&M in
mental health an unmet need was
targeted for information about all
other medications available for any
condition. A system was therefore
developed called MaPPs (Medicines:
A Patient Profile Summary). Again,
this was aimed at health provider
organisations, and MaPPs allows
tailored patient information leaflets
compiled by staff users to be provided
to patients with brief but important
information in fewer than 250 words.
It includes information such as what
the medicine is, what it does, main side
effects, including rare but important
side effects, together with how the
medicine should be taken and any
warnings. MaPPs is already achieving
high levels of success in the UK,
having been nominated as a finalist
at the recent Health Service Journal
(HSJ) Improving Care with Technology
awards 2017.
A significant challenge was that
healthcare professionals fail to effectively
and consistently counsel most patients
about medicines, contributing to poor
adherence to prescribed medication
and reduced health outcomes, plus
re-admissions. Manufacturers’ PILs are
paper based, complicated by clinical
terms, difficult to read, jargonistic and
Ian Lavery, Member of
Parliament for Wansbeck
and Chair of the Labour
Medicines are
the most
intervention yet
up to 50 per
cent of people
don’t take them
as prescribed
creating £900m
in wasted
confusing for patients. Additionally,
hospital admissions for adverse drug
reactions remain high, resulting in
patient morbidity and death and
significant NHS costs.
A further challenge was in the
requirement of rapid growth and
expansion of the Companies in the
North East to deliver the services
to healthcare sector providers. Ian
Lavery,Member of Parliament for
Wansbeck and Chair of the Labour
Party, explained, “I am proud my
constituency is linked to a growth in
employment from Mistura, whose
healthcare IT systems have such a
significant importance for safety
and efficiency both in the NHS
The future
The future of system development lies
with collaboration projects between
Mistura, the NHS and academia to
ensure usable systems that improve
health outcomes forpatients.
Mistura Informatics main project is to
extend MaPPs to include Medicines
Easy Read Leaflets (MerLs) advised by
consultant pharmacists from Health
and Social Care Northern Ireland.
MerLs have pictures and simple words
to explain about medicines and are
intended for people with a learning
difficulty, children, elderly and people
with memory problems. MerLs will also
be available soon in English, Welsh,
Polish and Portuguese via an App in
the App stores.
Mistura’s digital reminder project
aims to improve health outcomes
for patients by providing reminder
notifications direct to patients’ phones
or wearables. Led by the Pharmacy
department at North East London
Foundation NHS Trust, the innovation
will be tested in mental health patients
to ensure a good user experience
before engaging other condition areas.
Mistura’s digital medication
administration chart project aims to
speed up discharge from hospital
for domiciliary care patients. In
collaboration with Maidstone and
Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, advantages
include reduced waiting on assembly
of medicine dosette devices, reduced
transcribing errors with “real time”
medicines histories viewable by the GP
and community pharmacist.
Finally, Mistura Enterprise recently
won a prestigious grant, in partnership
with the University of Sunderland,
to build a Patient Decision Aid (PDA)
called “Whatsmychoice?”. Funded by
Innovate, the UK government’s digital
strategy arm, the platform will allow
a patient to compare all medications
available for treating a diagnosed
condition. This includes side effects and
benefits of each medication important
for considering the impact for individual
patients. The first phase of development
will deliver an “app” in the App stores
for patients to support “shared decision
making” in mental health, then rolling
out to other condition areas.
Overall, Mistura are confident about
the future in providing credible
medication information and adherence
systems to improve patient care and
NHS efficiency while preventing harm.
Tackling the
understanding of
risks and benefits
of medicines is
key to improving
health outcomes,
reduce waste
and hospital
Lisa Yates, Business
Operations Manager


This article was sponsored by Mistura Informatics Limited. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it.