Avoiding Prescription Errors
If you take a prescription medication, please read the online New York Times *article by Ellen Gabler. The corporate productivity push is creating a dangerous environment in today’s pharmacies. Just like all other health care professionals, pharmacists have been forced to devote more time to electronic medical records (EMR). Maintaining and developing more business is now a work requirement. Pharmacists are being evaluated based on the amount of revenue they create instead of the quality of care they provide. In this new environment, it is essential that patients be as proactive as possible. These are some of the precautions we should all take when traveling through pharmacy services.
Make sure it is your name and birthdate on the bag tag and bottle. Those EMR software systems contain many patients with similar names and birthdates.
Visually confirm the medication is correct with an online picture of the capsule, pill, or liquid. WebMD has a search engine that is easy to use.
Verify renewals have been authorized by the prescribing physician. The pharmacy may want you to continue the medication but your doctor may not.
If you have concerns, talk to the pharmacist. It may take some time to get him or her free from the computer, but it is worth the wait.
Read the instructions that accompany with the medication. The drug instructions should match your malady.
*How Chaos at Chain Pharmacies Is Putting Patients at Risk, Ellen Gabler, New York Times, Jan 31, 2020
Barbara O’Hara RPh
You can view the NY Times article here