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Let's talk medicines safety this 'Ask Your Pharmacist' Week

05 Nov 2018

The local NHS is encouraging people to talk to their local pharmacy team foradvice on medications and treatments – and how to take them safely.

This is the message behind national Ask Your Pharmacist Week, taking place between 5 – 12 November 2018.

Pharmacists are highly trained experts in medicines, and can provide advice on the best medication or treatments for a wide range of common winter health problems such as coughs, colds or flu-like symptoms, stomach aches, ear aches, sickness and diarrhoea, rashes, allergies, aches and pains.

They can also offer lots of useful advice on how to make sure you take medicines safely and make you aware of any possible side effects, in order to help you get the most from you medicines.

John Davey, Pharmacist and Medical Director of Davey’s Chemist in Kensington, Liverpool said:

Ask Your Pharmacist Week is all about making people more aware of what health advice and support is available to them at their local pharmacy.”

“As a pharmacist, my role is to offer advice on specific medications, and to help make sure that people are taking them safely and effectively, and are getting the very best outcomes.”

“If you are worried or have any questions about the medicines that you are taking, please don’t be afraid to ask - there’s no such thing as a silly question!”

As part of ‘Ask Your Pharmacist’ Week, people are being encouraged to follow these 5 simple steps when speaking to a pharmacist:

  1. Feel free to ask your pharmacist anything at all about your medication, health or wellbeing. Remember: they’re trained health professionals, and if it’s important to you, it’s important to them.

 

  1. If you’re visiting your pharmacy to get treatment for a minor ailment, be clear about your symptoms – what are they, and how long have you had them. This will help ensure they are able to give you the best advice possible.

 

  1. If you think the medication or advice given isn’t right for you, let them know. They won’t be offended and should be able to reassure you, clarify information, or discuss any alternatives.

 

  1. If you find anything is unclear about the advice your pharmacist has given you, say something. One way to do this is to repeat back what you think they mean and ask “is this correct?”

 

  1. If you want to talk to the pharmacist in more depth, ask if you are eligible for their free of charge NHS medicines advice services, designed to help you get the most out of your medicines.

Your local pharmacy can also offer free health checks, stop smoking support, blood pressure testing and much more with no appointments needed.

Other little known about services which local pharmacists can provide are the delivery of medicines to your front door if you are too unwell to leave home, or aren’t able to pick them up in person.

Pharmacist, John Davey adds,“You can always talk to your pharmacist in complete confidence, even about the most personal symptoms - either in person or over the phone, and if you’d like a bit of privacy, most pharmacies also have a private consultation area where you can talk without being overheard by anyone too.”

To find your nearest pharmacy visit: www.nhs.uk

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