For the majority of us, the health care professional we see most frequently is the pharmacist. You may see your physician a couple times a year, and the visits to the pharmacy occur several times a month. While at the pharmacy, there is a very valuable resource available to you and that is your pharmacist. Pharmacists have received specialized training and are educated to insure prescriptions are dispensed to you accurately and are appropriate for the diagnosis determined by your prescribing health care provider. Filling a prescription is more than just counting out tablets or pouring a liquid into a bottle. The pharmacist reviews the prescription to make sure there are no interactions with other medications you are taking and that there are no allergies or contraindications with the newly prescribed drug.
Dispensing of medications is just one of the responsibilities of the pharmacist. Pharmacists are a valuable member of your health care team not only serving as the medication experts, but pharmacists are also able to administer immunizations, provide comprehensive medication reviews, assist with disease state management and education, and offer health care screenings. Next time you visit your pharmacy, ask the pharmacist what services are available to you. Not all pharmacies and pharmacists are providing the mentioned services, but you may be surprised what opportunities are available to you. Take the opportunity to make use of this very valuable resource because your pharmacist is here to help.