Pharmacists, as an occupation, poll as one of the most trusted professionals. The job often ranks in the top three of the most trustworthy professions out there. And for good reason, pharmacists truly do watch out for people’s health and well-being.
In order for pharmacists to do their jobs, they need the resources and support of the pharmacies in which they work. And most often, pharmacies like the ones found in Victoria provide many extra services that address a wide range of health issues. In fact, you might even be surprised at how many services pharmacies actually offer.
Here are some services you may not know your pharmacy provides.
Emergency Prescription Refills, Renewals and Modifications
In Canada, the Canadian Pharmacists Association is responsible for something called the Pharmacists’ Expanded Scope of Practice. This has given pharmacists more authority to help manage patients’ medical programs.
While the rules are different province to province, in British Columbia, and therefore Victoria, pharmacists’ scope has seen several expansions. Pharmacists in BC are granted authority to provide emergency prescription refills, renew and extend prescriptions, change drug dosage or formulation, and make therapeutic substitutions. This means that pharmacists and pharmacies are in a better position to serve the needs of patients.
For those that need 24 hour monitoring, there are several physician-prescribed portable monitors to help. For example, a wearable electrocardiogram (EKG) device gathers continuous information regarding a person’s heart rhythms. Another example is an Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitor, which is a device that measures blood pressure.
These tools are important in building a clear picture of a person’s health over a sustained period, while they work, sleep, exercise and so on. Most pharmacies can equip patients with the devices to help physicians accurately diagnose health issues.
Medication Adherence Support Programs
In addition to preparing and packaging medication, many pharmacists will assist patients to ensure they are adhering to their medication schedule. If a patient’s medication program is perhaps new to them, or differs in dosage than what they are used to, personalized consultations can be arranged to monitor results. This can include help with proper and timely usage, addressing side effects, and other issues a patient may need help with.
Pharmacies provide this service to ensure that patients are interacting in a healthy way with their medical prescriptions.
Preventative Care and Wellness Coaching
Prevention is always best when it comes to health care, and many pharmacies will provide helpful clinics and information sessions to equip people with knowledge. These clinics are meant to help people take a proactive approach to their health. Some examples include seminars on quitting smoking, or how to help maintain a healthy heart or build healthy bones, or information on surviving with and managing diabetes. The topics may also be seasonal, like how to prepare for, and make it through, flu season. They will vary by pharmacy, so inquire to see what’s on offer for you.
Vaccines and Immunizations
Speaking of the flu, most pharmacies will have pharmacists that will be able to administer certain vaccinations, like the influenza vaccine, for example. Other vaccines are available, too, and may be offered seasonally or with a prescription.
For those who are planning to travel internationally to countries that require proof of immunization, pharmacists can help track provincial, national and even international immunization programs. If, for example, Yellow Fever vaccination or meningococcal vaccination is required, some pharmacists can administer them as well.
As you can see, pharmacists and pharmacies like the ones found in Victoria do more than fill prescriptions and test your blood pressure. They are deeply invested in ensuring patients receive the best care in medication, preventative information and access to treatments as possible.
It’s with good reason that pharmacists are so trusted, they truly do have their patients’ interest in mind.