DO YOU need help to manage your medicines?

A new service is being launched to enable Island pharmacists to electronically share information about a person’s medication history, so an accurate and up-to-date record is held.

The system will go live in April and can provide a nominated pharmacy with information needed to help with any new or changed medicines following a hospital stay — providing the person has given their consent for their information to be shared.

When they return home, the pharmacy will invite them in for a one-to-one chat about their medicines. Anyone unable to get to their pharmacy can have a home visit by one of the Island's Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) pharmacists instead.

Gill Honeywell, chief pharmacist at St Mary’s Hospital, said: "Healthcare professionals take care of medicines during hospital stays, but returning home with different or more medication can be confusing.

"Our Medicines Helpline has been set up to support people and soon we will have the ability to share information between Island pharmacies which will provide a clear record of a person’s medication, so pharmacists are able to carry out medicine reviews and make sure people are getting the most from their medicines."

The helpline, which supports around 100 people a month in the first few days after they leave hospital, will continue to offer support. It is operated Mondays to Fridays, 9am to 12 noon. It is also available for anyone who has questions about their medicines following an outpatient appointment.

Gill added: "Over time, people who take a number of different types of medicines, for different reasons, can find their treatments don’t work as well together or they forget to take their medication which can sometimes make them feel worse. "A review can help prevent trips to the GP or even hospital, and most importantly, help people feel better. It is really important that we all know what medicines we are taking and how we take them and pharmacists are best placed to help with this."

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