In October (American Pharmacists Month, or "APhM"), we will release the results of a survey APhA commissioned to gain insight into consumers’ medication habits and the relationship they have with their pharmacist. Results suggest we have some work to do as a profession to ensure that our patients see us as a partner in their health care. APhM is a perfect vehicle to get out that message. We'll do our part with the media. I hope you will help us by letting your patients know that you are eager to become more involved in their health and to help them use their medications correctly.
“Know Your Medicine, Know Your Pharmacist” will again be the theme and call to action for this year’s campaign. Our consumer outreach efforts will place a special emphasis on using a personal medication record (PMR) to help patients get to know their pharmacist. Survey results revealed that only 28% of consumers carry an up-to-date list of their medications. The most common reason, the survey showed, that patients did not use medication lists was, “I never thought about it (49%).” Encourage your patients to keep a list and share it with all of their health care providers to minimize the risk of improper dosing, duplicating medications, and harmful drug interactions and side effects. I challenge all APhA members to get involved this APhM to help carry out APhA’s mission of improving medication use and advancing patient care. I’d also like to give a special thanks to McNeil Consumer Healthcare for their continued support of American Pharmacists Month.