What do pharmacists really do behind the counter?
Most people are used to “activating the pharmacist” by bringing in a prescription, but what happens after you hand over that slip of paper? And how else can a pharmacist help?
“Pharmacists do a lot of work behind the scenes, and can help people in many ways beyond simply filling a doctor’s prescription,” says William Poggemiller, pharmacist and store operator at Rimbey Value Drug Mart.
“Pharmacists can order lab work for people, treat minor ailments, and help monitor and treat long term ailments,” William says. “We also have a lot of experience with insurance providers, and can help people navigate their coverage.”
The depth and breadth of knowledge pharmacists bring to patient care will help keep you safe, and ensure your treatment plan is effective and manageable.
Is it safe? Is it effective? Can the patient take it?
When you visit Rimbey Value Drug Mart, the pharmacists will take great care to give you the best possible treatment plan.
- Prescription drop off: A good pharmacist will collect information to ensure the prescribed medication will be safe, effective, and that you’ll be able to take it. They’ll want to know about allergies, other prescribed and over-the-counter medications, medical conditions, and may ask for your height and weight to ensure the dosing is correct. In the last six months Poggemiller has seen a lot of insurance provider coverage changes, and may be able to help you find a more cost-effective medication in the same class.
- Behind the desk: The pharmacist will analyze your information and consult electronic health records to ensure a safe, effective dosage. They may need to manage drug interactions by separating the timing of medications, adjusting dosages, or finding alternative medications. At Rimbey Value Drug Mart the entire process is documented so it can be reviewed if there’s ever a problem. “We document who’s done what in the process as well,” William says.
- Labelling: Have you ever found pages of instructions stuffed inside your prescription bag that left you unsure what to do? “We make sure medication is labeled in a clear, concise way,” William says, so you’ll actually know how to follow the instructions. May cause drowsiness? Take with a meal? Avoid operating heavy machinery? Your custom label will let you know.
- Prescription pick-up: When the patient picks up their medication, the pharmacists at Rimbey Value Drug Mart take time to explain what it’s for, how to take it, and any other instructions for safe, effective usage. “We’ll talk with patients about potential side effects or issues to watch for, and make sure they can manage the instructions.”
Call 403-843-2020 for assistance or more information, or visit Rimbey Value Drug Mart at 4917-50 Ave.