How pharmacists protect patient safety

pharmacist writing on clipboard

Pharmacy professionals play a unique role in healthcare; they use their depth of knowledge in medication optimization and adherence, disease prevention, and risk factor management to protect patient safety in Southeast Asia.

In countries like the United States a doctor may represent the face of medicine. But throughout Southeast Asia most people seek pharmacy professionals first when treating an illness. Thus, as the front line workers of the healthcare industry, pharmacy professionals protect safely not only by being conveniently available to the public, but also through their expertise and commitment to the patients they serve.

  1. Providing access to medicine

Throughout Southeast Asia and especially in rural areas, pharmacy professionals often set up shop near their homes, bringing access to medication to villages and neighborhoods far from hospitals and clinics. Affordable medications in a close to home locations allow patients to skip the cost of trips to the nearest city to see a doctor. The widespread geographic availability of pharmacies in Southeast Asia ensures convenience and privacy.

Avoiding doctor visits due to financial limitations may cost a patient much more in the end if their condition worsens, requiring emergency care. With access to medicine near their own homes thanks to pharmacy professionals, patients who would otherwise avoid doctor visits can purchase medications to treat medical issues.   

  1. Assessing individual health

Pharmacy professionals may ask about various areas of patient health including lifestyle habits, any current medications, symptoms, and, with training, may even make more complex diagnoses of serious diseases. Seeing  patients face-to-face as they purchase medication, pharmacy professionals have the opportunity to manage risk factors and check for symptoms, and patients may easily return for follow-up visits to a pharmacy near their own homes.

Through mClinica’s SwipeRx platform, pharmacy professionals have access to continuing education modules that may aid them in understanding how best to assess the health of their patients and protect patient safety – and may even count towards renewing licensure.

  1. Keeping patients informed

Pharmacy professionals are an ideal source of information, as they work directly with members of a community regarding their health concerns. Using the SwipeRx platform to remain up-to-date on drug information, pharmacy professionals may share treatment recommendations or adverse effects and how best to avoid them, ultimately increasing patient adherence to treatment plans. Failing to complete a course of medication as prescribed can be more harmful than not beginning a course of medication in the first place, taking into account drug resistant strains of disease – a circumstance pharmacy professionals may aid in preventing.

Furthermore, pharmacy professionals may introduce patients to tools like mClinica’s Connect app, which sends medication reminders and drug information straight to a patient’s mobile phone, further keeping patients informed and improving patient adherence.

Ultimately, pharmacy professionals are among the most accessible healthcare workers in Southeast Asia. Through their proximity to patients and the frequency patients visit pharmacies in comparison to hospitals and clinics, pharmacy professionals work hard to protect patient safety in various aspects of their work.