Pharmacists' Association of Saskatchewan

October 07, 2013 09:00 ET

Medication Safety A Priority for Saskatchewan Pharmacists

REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwired - Oct. 7, 2013) - Research has shown a high number of Canadians have been seriously injured or worse, because of medication incidents. As a result, the Government of Saskatchewan and the Pharmacists' Association of Saskatchewan have partnered on the introduction of a new patient program - the Saskatchewan Medication Assessment Program (SMAP).

The Program provides funding for Saskatchewan pharmacists to conduct an assessment of a patient and their medications to help reduce adverse medication incidences. Throughout the program, the pharmacist will work directly with the patient and their practitioners to support patients in properly managing their medications. A medication assessment will involve a holistic approach to the patient's needs which is intended to:

  • Improve the safety of the medications patients are taking by identifying issues they may be having with the medications they have been prescribed;
  • Provide options that will help patients remember to take their medications;
  • Answer any questions on medications and their intended impacts;
  • Ensure all of their medication issues are being addressed and/or refer them to other health practitioners when necessary; and
  • Provide education on ways to improve their health generally.

Information obtained during the medication assessment will become part of the patient's medication records. This information will more accurately assist pharmacists and other health practitioners in making the best possible medication choices for their patients.

Dawn Martin, Executive Director of the Pharmacists' Association of Saskatchewan states that, "in its most recent 5 year strategic plan, the Ministry of Health has made patient safety and in particular medication safety, one of its priorities. The Pharmacists' Association of Saskatchewan is very pleased to have partnered with the Ministry of Health on developing this important program to help ensure patients are getting the best possible health outcomes from their medications."

The program is funded by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health for beneficiaries of the Saskatchewan Drug Plan. In order to be eligible to participate, patients must be:

65 years of age or older and….

  • be taking 5 or more long-term medications or
  • are taking warfarin or other medications commonly referred to as blood thinners or
  • are possibly experiencing side effects from their medications

SMAP is part of a growing list of expanding programs and services being offered by Saskatchewan Pharmacists.

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