The Fraser Lake Medicine Centre is one of 100 pharmacies in B.C. that have been selected to participate in a UBC research project.
The project, which started in December last year and runs through till January 2012, aims to determine whether pharmacists and doctors working together can make a difference for patients in helping them to get the maximum benefit out of their prescribed and over the counter medications.
“A lot of pharmacies, they just fill out the prescription,” said Pharmacist at the Fraser Lake Medicine Centre, George Pettie. “Going into more detail hasn’t necessarily been the norm,” he said.
The research project involves pharmacists spending more time with patients to help them become more successful in managing their health.
“It is something that I’ve done for the last 20 years - I’ve helped people understand their medication ... but this takes it a step further,
“We actually sit down and go over their medications, what they are doing for them, what they are supposed to be doing for them, and whether they are achieving what they were hoping those medications would do for them and then make recommendations if they are not hitting targets,” said Pettie.
Patients who are not having success with their drug therapy are encouraged to book an appointment with a pharmacist.
There are a number of reasons why a prescribed medication may not be working to the optimum including a conflict with other medicines in the system.
“It’s crazy sometimes when you find what people are taking as over the counter medications and they’re not hitting targets for a good reason - medications are just flying through their system,” said Pettie.
“Pharmacists have been terribly underutilized and that’s our fault, maybe we didn’t spend the time necessary time with patients in the past and maybe we didn’t recognize that we could add benefit to the health care system and to patients understanding their medication,” he added.
If you would like to book an appointment with a pharmacist at the Fraser Lake Medicine Centre please call 250-699-0075 or 250-699-0079.
During the research project the government is paying for the appointments.