Pharmacists Your Medication Experts

Mar 11, 2014

By Trevor Shewfelt, Pharmacist at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy

Scotty! I need more power! On the USS Enterprise there were lots of glamorous jobs. Kirk got to engage in hand to hand combat with half the aliens he met and tongue wrestle the other half. Spock Vulcan nerve pinched his way out of many jams. McCoy exclaimed, Hes dead Jim! a lot. Im not sure if Id want him as my family doc. Anyway, everyone forgets that the whole team needed the Engineer, Montgomery Scott, to keep the ship moving, or nothing else would get done. Scottys expertise was essential for the success of the team.

When it comes to your health care team, just call me Mr. Scott. As a pharmacist, Im not that glamorous, but my expertise is essential. Here are some examples. Ive got this patient. Shes in the hospital right now, and cant take her regular medication by mouth. How can we help her? I got this call from a local family physician. We discussed the options. Could change her medications to an injectable form? No, her medications werent available by injection. Could we switch her medications to something else? No, her symptoms were increasing and it seemed that only her regular regime of medications would help. So, our pharmacy compounded her medications into a suppository. The patient was comfortable again, and started to improve.

We just had a meeting with my patients family. They had a lot of questions about her medications. Several of them have been changed since she was place in our Personal Care Home. I dont know what all the medications are for. Can you meet with them and explain the changes? That call was from a Personal Care Home Nurse. I arranged for the family to come to the pharmacy and we discussed their mothers medications. I explained what each one was for, and addressed their concerns. As they had family members inCalgary, I told them to have the out of town family members call me too. That way the local family wouldnt be bombarded with medication questions they couldnt answer.

I have a patient that needs dental work done. This is the antibiotic I want to put them on. However, the patient is on a number of psychiatric medications. Can you see if there are any potential drug interactions? This call was from a dentist. I checked the drug interactions. The antibiotic the dentist initially chose was going to be a problem. We picked a different antibiotic and the dental procedure went well.

I like to think pharmacists make your life better all the time. But this month, we want to tell you about it. March is Pharmacist Awareness Month. To celebrate, the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy is going to give stuff away! Come down to the pharmacy today and fill out a ballot saying how a Dauphin Clinic Pharmacist has made your life better to enter for fabulous prizes! Mark March 19 on your calendar. 730 CKDM will be live at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy. Come on down for coffee, muffins and blood pressure checks! You can even meet CKDM personalities! Pull a pharmacist aside and try to stump them with your medication questions!

Hopefully you dont stump me on March 19, because pharmacists are your medication experts. If you have questions about your medications or the medications of your family, call us. Is that herbal product your neighbor is taking going to be good for you? Call us. Should you get that shingles vaccine youve seen on TV? Call us. Doctors, nurses and dentists call me every day to answer their medication questions. As do physiotherapists, dieticians, social workers, chiropractors, and many other members of your health care team. Why are all these people calling a pharmacist with their medication questions? What do they know that you dont?

So if you have medication issues, who are you going to call? Just as Mr. Scott was the expert at keeping theEnterpriseworking, your pharmacist is the expert at keeping your medications working to keep you healthy. You are the captain of your health care. Use your crew wisely. Call a pharmacist today and demand Scotty! I need more power!

As always if you have any questions or concerns about these or other products, ask your pharmacist.

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The information in this article is intended as a helpful guide only. It is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional advice. If you have any questions about your medications and what is right for you see your doctor, pharmacist or other health care professional.



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