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BMJ: Too much medicine (7)

HIFA Quotation: 

1. Health providers (doctor, clinical officer,nurse etc) should have adequate time with each consumer (client/patient) of health services. At least 20-30 minutes if possible. This will assist to get the complaints, assess, investigate (laboratory, radiology) and make a diagnosis/provisional diagnosis which will be a basis for prescribing

2. Health providers need to concentrate on what the consumer is saying (listen, observe, feel, ask) and not to rush in prescribing drugs even before the consumer has finished explaining as we see/observe happening in our many public facilities

3. Consumers should not dictate what they want in terms of type of drug they prefer or tell the provider to write a prescription if a particular drug before being properly examined to check if indeed the consumer need such a drug/s because most of the times they do that out of ignorance, or because someone told them the benefits of such a drug/s

4. Health Providers need to give proper simple instructions on how the drug/s be taken like 6hourly, 8hourly etc and actually indicate and tell the consumer the significance of conforming to such schedule. Whether before or after food. What we see, hear is take this drug 3times a day/4tines a day even without mentioning the name of the drug. We forget that most of our consumers are not drug literate.

5. Pharmaceutical and pharmacists please have enough time to explain the drug dosages, timing, effects to consumers and pharmacy boards I think need to review the policy of over the counter (OTC) drug purchasing as some of what are regarded as secondary drugs can be purchased OTC with no prescription at all.

6. There is need for public civic education on dangers of drugs as most of these consumers take drugs without food/adequate fluids and once symptoms subsides they don't continue to finish the course hence resistance and ir they think the drug us nit good enough. This could be reasons for going for these expensive secondary drugs.

Date of HIFA message: 
Sunday, October 22, 2017
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Author Name: 
Rebecca C Ngalande
Author Organisational Type: 
Education and training
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Rebecca C Ngalande is a Maternal and Neonatal Health Specialist Mentor & Consultant. Currently working in Bangladesh as a consultant strengthening the Midwifery Faculty through mentoring. najeremanna AT

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