Ask About Medicines Week
Ask About Medicines Week is a national campaign aimed at encouraging people to ask healthcare professionals about their medicines. Local community pharmacies and the Pharmacy department at St Mary’s Hospital will be available to give information and advice to ensure that people use their medicines appropriately. At St Mary’s Hospital there will be a stand in the main entrance with leaflets, medicines charts, information and re-sealable bags to bring medicines in to hospital. The bags are also available from local Community Pharmacies.
Last year over 2 million prescriptions were issued on the Island, with more than 200,000 issues of medicines a year from the dispensary at St Mary’s Hospital and 7000 doses of medicines administered each day to patients. With most patients receiving a medicine as part of their care, it is important that patients understand their treatment.
When patients bring their own medicines in to Hospital with them, Pharmacy Technicians will make sure that they can continue to take them whilst they are in Hospital. There are 7 Pharmacy Technicians who visit patients on the ward each day to make sure that they have sufficient supplies of the right medicines, at the right dose on admission and will supply any changes to the patients prescription during their stay. Many patients can go home without needing any more medicines from the dispensary.
A recent survey carried out highlighted that 40% of people in the UK were not involved as much as they wanted to be in deciding the best medicine for them and that 44% of people prescribed a new medicine didn’t feel that they were given enough information about other treatment choices when they visited their health professional.
This year’s Ask About Medicines Week runs from 7 to 11 November 2005.
Notes to Editor
- The objective of Ask About Medicines is to enable people in the UK to make informed choices about medicine taking, by:
- increasing people's understanding of their medicines
- helping patients to be involved in decisions about their treatment
- creating more opportunities for patients and carers to ask questions and raise concerns about medicines
- encouraging health professionals to help patients and carers to ask questions about medicines
- improving access to further sources of helpful, reliable medicines and information.
- Local initiatives and activities organised by pharmacists, PCTs, doctors’ surgeries, hospitals and Voluntary Health Organisations take place across England as part of Ask About Medicines Week.
- Almost three quarters of us (73%) have taken a prescribed medicine in the past 12 months and over a third of us (37%) have been taking a prescribed medicine for a year or more.
- A poll conducted by the Department of Health revealed that 76% thought it important that the NHS involve patients in decisions about their condition or treatment.
More information is available on the website at www.askaboutmedicines.org.
Issue date: 07 November 2005
For further information, please contact the Communications Department, Isle of Wight NHS Primary Care Trust, St Marys Hospital, Newport, Isle of Wight PO30 5TG. Telephone number 01983-552003 (out of hours please contact the switchboard)