COMMUNITY COLUMNIST: Pharmacists offer more than just pills these days

Opinion May 07, 2015 Hamilton Mountain News

Most people are familiar with the pharmacist who dispense their prescription medications and counsel them on the proper use of medications. But now the pharmacist’s role is much more expanded and most often they come out from behind the counter and actively involve in Canadians’ health care.

As a pharmacist, I am now providing flu vaccinations, medication review services, prescription renewals and chronic disease management services in addition to my dispensing role. In Ontario, several pharmacists are now offering expanded clinical services, which allow them to provide further support to patients, including:

MedsCheck (medication review): A provincially funded program for eligible patients who are on three or more chronic medications as well as diabetes patients, residents of a long-term care home, or those who are homebound. This service allows the pharmacist to review a patient’s medications and reconcile them. During a MedsCheck, the pharmacist educates the patient on the safe use of medication and contacts their doctor as needed to resolve any issues with medications.

Flu shots: Last year, a lot of people visited their local pharmacy to receive their annual flu shots instead of their doctor’s office or health clinics. During the recent flu season, Ontario pharmacists administered more than 900,000 flu shots. This initiative has significantly reduced the burden on the health-care system and has offered convenience to clients and patients. In some provinces, pharmacists are able to administer other vaccines such as travel vaccines.

Smoking cessation counselling and prescribing: This service is offered to eligible patients at no charge. Pharmacists are allowed to prescribe medications for smoking cessation when appropriate, to patients who desire to quit smoking.

Adapting and renewing prescriptions: A lot of patients have found this service very helpful. Pharmacists can now adapt prescriptions as well as renew prescriptions when appropriate, without the need to call a patient’s doctor. This is especially useful for patients on medications for chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart conditions.

Chronic medication management: This service is offered for conditions like diabetes, heart conditions and asthma. Pharmacists with additional certifications such as diabetes educator or asthma educator can provide ongoing medication management services to their patients.

Pharmacists, whether in a community pharmacy, long-term care facility or hospital, or as part of a family health team, are important members of your health-care team.

Sony Poulose is Pharmacist/Owner of the Shoppers Drug Mart at 1411 Upper Sherman Ave. If you would like to write in this space, call editor Gord Bowes at 905-664-8800 ext. 335.

COMMUNITY COLUMNIST: Pharmacists offer more than just pills these days

Pharmacist’s role is much more expanded and most often they come out from behind the counter and actively involve in Canadians’ health care.

Opinion May 07, 2015 Hamilton Mountain News

Most people are familiar with the pharmacist who dispense their prescription medications and counsel them on the proper use of medications. But now the pharmacist’s role is much more expanded and most often they come out from behind the counter and actively involve in Canadians’ health care.

As a pharmacist, I am now providing flu vaccinations, medication review services, prescription renewals and chronic disease management services in addition to my dispensing role. In Ontario, several pharmacists are now offering expanded clinical services, which allow them to provide further support to patients, including:

MedsCheck (medication review): A provincially funded program for eligible patients who are on three or more chronic medications as well as diabetes patients, residents of a long-term care home, or those who are homebound. This service allows the pharmacist to review a patient’s medications and reconcile them. During a MedsCheck, the pharmacist educates the patient on the safe use of medication and contacts their doctor as needed to resolve any issues with medications.

Flu shots: Last year, a lot of people visited their local pharmacy to receive their annual flu shots instead of their doctor’s office or health clinics. During the recent flu season, Ontario pharmacists administered more than 900,000 flu shots. This initiative has significantly reduced the burden on the health-care system and has offered convenience to clients and patients. In some provinces, pharmacists are able to administer other vaccines such as travel vaccines.

As a pharmacist, I am now providing flu vaccinations, medication review services, prescription renewals and chronic disease management services in addition to my dispensing role.

Smoking cessation counselling and prescribing: This service is offered to eligible patients at no charge. Pharmacists are allowed to prescribe medications for smoking cessation when appropriate, to patients who desire to quit smoking.

Adapting and renewing prescriptions: A lot of patients have found this service very helpful. Pharmacists can now adapt prescriptions as well as renew prescriptions when appropriate, without the need to call a patient’s doctor. This is especially useful for patients on medications for chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart conditions.

Chronic medication management: This service is offered for conditions like diabetes, heart conditions and asthma. Pharmacists with additional certifications such as diabetes educator or asthma educator can provide ongoing medication management services to their patients.

Pharmacists, whether in a community pharmacy, long-term care facility or hospital, or as part of a family health team, are important members of your health-care team.

Sony Poulose is Pharmacist/Owner of the Shoppers Drug Mart at 1411 Upper Sherman Ave. If you would like to write in this space, call editor Gord Bowes at 905-664-8800 ext. 335.

COMMUNITY COLUMNIST: Pharmacists offer more than just pills these days

Pharmacist’s role is much more expanded and most often they come out from behind the counter and actively involve in Canadians’ health care.

Opinion May 07, 2015 Hamilton Mountain News

Most people are familiar with the pharmacist who dispense their prescription medications and counsel them on the proper use of medications. But now the pharmacist’s role is much more expanded and most often they come out from behind the counter and actively involve in Canadians’ health care.

As a pharmacist, I am now providing flu vaccinations, medication review services, prescription renewals and chronic disease management services in addition to my dispensing role. In Ontario, several pharmacists are now offering expanded clinical services, which allow them to provide further support to patients, including:

MedsCheck (medication review): A provincially funded program for eligible patients who are on three or more chronic medications as well as diabetes patients, residents of a long-term care home, or those who are homebound. This service allows the pharmacist to review a patient’s medications and reconcile them. During a MedsCheck, the pharmacist educates the patient on the safe use of medication and contacts their doctor as needed to resolve any issues with medications.

Flu shots: Last year, a lot of people visited their local pharmacy to receive their annual flu shots instead of their doctor’s office or health clinics. During the recent flu season, Ontario pharmacists administered more than 900,000 flu shots. This initiative has significantly reduced the burden on the health-care system and has offered convenience to clients and patients. In some provinces, pharmacists are able to administer other vaccines such as travel vaccines.

As a pharmacist, I am now providing flu vaccinations, medication review services, prescription renewals and chronic disease management services in addition to my dispensing role.

Smoking cessation counselling and prescribing: This service is offered to eligible patients at no charge. Pharmacists are allowed to prescribe medications for smoking cessation when appropriate, to patients who desire to quit smoking.

Adapting and renewing prescriptions: A lot of patients have found this service very helpful. Pharmacists can now adapt prescriptions as well as renew prescriptions when appropriate, without the need to call a patient’s doctor. This is especially useful for patients on medications for chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart conditions.

Chronic medication management: This service is offered for conditions like diabetes, heart conditions and asthma. Pharmacists with additional certifications such as diabetes educator or asthma educator can provide ongoing medication management services to their patients.

Pharmacists, whether in a community pharmacy, long-term care facility or hospital, or as part of a family health team, are important members of your health-care team.

Sony Poulose is Pharmacist/Owner of the Shoppers Drug Mart at 1411 Upper Sherman Ave. If you would like to write in this space, call editor Gord Bowes at 905-664-8800 ext. 335.