Providence Medical Center celebrates American Pharmacists Month
“Know Your Pharmacist-Know Your Medicine," the slogan for American Pharmacists Month, which is a celebration in support of pharmacists around the country, held in October. The goal of American Pharmacists Month is to raise awareness among the public, patients, policy makers and other stakeholders about the broad roles pharmacists play in health care today.
Pharmacists offer many services beyond the safe distribution of medications. These services include, but are not limited to, administering seasonal and lifespan immunizations; medication reviews to assess safety, effectiveness, interactions and adherence; care management and counseling for disease states such as diabetes,high cholesterol; and smoking cessation counseling. At PMC, the Pharmacists are involved with patient care at every level ... from reconciling home meds in the ER, monitoring drug therapy on inpatients, to educating outpatients after cardiac events.
This month-long observance recognizes the impact pharmacists have on improving medication use, advancing patient care and improving patient access and public health across all geographies and throughout all practice settings.
“In our rural setting, we get to work closely with other health care providers to optimize the patient’s therapy. We round with physicians, nurses and other disciplines such as social services. We spend a lot of time investigating patient’s medication background," Kim Bentjen, Pharm D at PMC said. "We call the patients pharmacy to get a recent med list, we call providers (family and specialist) to get a list of what they want the patient to be on and we send the updated med list home with the patient and to their physician upon discharge.”
Scot Surber, PharmD at PMC feels the slogan, “Know Your Pharmacist-Know Your Medicine” is so fitting because "we really want to encourage patients to interact with their pharmacists and learn more about their medications and other services that we can provide”
Here are some pharmacy and medication tips, brought to you by PMC Pharmacy:
You should use only one pharmacy to fill your prescriptions. That way, you will have a single, complete source for all of your medications. The pharmacist will be more likely to pick up potential interactions among them and contact your doctor if needed. This applies to OTC as well as prescription drugs.
When you fill your prescription at the pharmacy, make sure to do the following:
• Your pharmacist must have the same information as your doctor regarding your medications and past reactions you have had (again, no reaction is too trivial to bring up).
• If there are children in the home, make sure to ask for child-resistant lids.
• If no children are in the household, your pharmacist may be able to provide you with easier opening lids. If you have children visiting, put the medication out of their reach.
• If the medication is a liquid, get a measuring device with the prescription -- usually a measuring teaspoon or a medical syringe. Don't trust the volume of your home teaspoon or your ability to guess.
• Find out how the medication should be stored. Most people leave their medications in their bathroom medicine cabinet. This is arguably the worst place in the house for pills, because the humidity in a bathroom can make them break down more easily. Other drugs need to be refrigerated. Find out about yours before you leave the drug store.
• Before you leave the pharmacy, also check to make sure the medication you are given matches your doctor's prescription. Look at the directions for taking the medication. Do these match what the doctor told you? Ask the pharmacist any questions you have.
• If you accidentally use a medication or a substance not meant for you, call the Poison Control Center at 800-222-1222 or call 911. Keep these numbers handy in case of an emergency.