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Pharmacists Urged To Meet With Doctors To Better Services

Doctors and pharmacists should meet together to improve their services to patients, it has been suggested. The suggestion came from the Ministry of Health, Specialist Physician, Dr Gyaneshwar Rao. He
10 Oct 2016 12:59
Pharmacists Urged To Meet With Doctors To Better Services
From left: Pharmacist-Beverly Snell, Margaret O'Connor, Fiji Pharmaceutical Society president, Renshika Sen, Assistant Minister for Health, Alex O'Connor, International Speakers, Professor Iqbal Ramzan and Dr Lynn Weekes and Reenal Chand at the Shangri-La Fijian Resort & Spa on Yanuca Islands yesterday. Photo:ARISHMA DEVI-NARAYAN

Doctors and pharmacists should meet together to improve their services to patients, it has been suggested.

The suggestion came from the Ministry of Health, Specialist Physician, Dr Gyaneshwar Rao.

He said it was about time that doctors and pharmacists hosted meetings together, and involve each other in the association meetings as well.

He was addressing pharmacists at the annual conference of the Fiji Pharmaceutical Society at Shangri-La’s Fijian Resort and Spa on Yanuca Island yesterday.He said the meetings were needed in order to understand patient’s health and medicinal issues.

Speaking on epilepsy, Dr Rao said most patients in Fiji had a habit of using multiple drugs, if the first one did not work for them.

He said this should not be the case and therefore the pharmacists must be careful with the dosage prescription of their customers always.

Dr Rao said the customers should be sent back to the doctors for a diagnosis again, if they complained that certain prescribed medicine did not work for them.

He said that epileptic drugs must be prescribed by the doctors on an individual basis.

“In Fiji we have to consider that patients come from far and from remote areas and their income. We also have to check the availability of the drug prescribed to them at their nearest health store.”

Fiji Pharmaceutical Society president, Renshika Sen, said when doctor prescribed medicines, sometimes pharmacists must understand they are humans too.

“If a prescription comes to a pharmacist and it’s not good, there is always that option where we tell the patient that they need to get a second opinion,” Ms Sen said.

She said it was not undermining the doctor but creating a safety net.

 

Generic drugs okay to use: pharmacist

People fear using generic drugs although they are as effective as the branded and expensive drugs,” Ms Sen said.

“We have a lot of brands coming in – generic brands.

“We have been trained in such a way where we have this culture where if the doctor says take this particular brand, they always stick to that,” she said.

But she said the misconception affected the poor patients who were always looking for the branded drug with the notion believing that that would be the only drug that would work.

She explained that the patients were scared to take the generic drugs because of the misconception.

“There could be hundreds of companies making the same thing with the same quality standard and we sort of want them to realise that the medication is available,” Ms Sen said.

The annual conference of the Fiji Pharmaceutical Society this year commenced with the theme, ‘quality use of medicines, taking a balanced and evidence based approach’.

The international speaker and the chief executive officer of National Prescribing Services, Dr Lynn Weekes, highlighted the importance of applying the evidence based practice in medicine.

But she reminded that evidences were not always pure and one must be careful, aware and rightly informed of the drugs they had in hand.

 

Edited by Maraia Vula

Feedback:  arishma.narayan@fijisun.com.fj



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