The Role of the Pharmacist for Helping Patients Who Self-prescribe
The rampant irrational self-prescription is causing enormous problems, one of them is antimicrobial resistance. This is the leading challenge in regard to self-medication. Although the adversity responsible self-medication can bring potential benefits to both individual level and community level.
Pharmaceutical care is becoming important topic while the self-care culture continues to grow. The modern pharmacist is a team member that plays a great role in public health.
Self-medication and self-care lead to self-prescribing patients. In order that the patient makes an informed decision, we need have in place a sound pharmacy management. And pharmacist who are willing to accept accountability in achieving responsible self-medication.
Role of the pharmacist in developing responsible self-medication:
- Start a dialogue with the patient(and if necessary with the patient-physician) to get a detailed understanding of the medication history
- Ask key question to the patient and pass all needed information that is relevant for him or her(e.g. how to take the medicines while taking in consideration the risk issues)
- Ensure confidentiality regarding the patient condition
- Help the patient undertake appropriate and responsible self-medication, if necessary, refer the patient for medical advice
The quality drug supplier:
Ensure that the product that he/she purchases are from reputable sources and of good quality Ensure that the product is properly stored.
In order to enhance self-medication it is important to share experience and develop a qualitative relationship with:
Health care professionals; National professional association; Patient and the general public;
What if we achieve responsible self-medication? Well, the World Health Organization has stated that responsible self-medication can:
- Help prevent and treat symptoms and ailments that do not require medical consultation;
- Reduce the increasing pressure on medical services for the relief of minor ailments,
especially when financial and human resources are limited;
- Increase the availability of healthcare to populations living in rural or remote areas where access to medical advice may be difficult; and
- Enable patients to control their own chronic conditions.
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