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Medication Tips

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MEDICATION ADHERENCE

Jennifer Wirick

Director, Pharmacy Quality and Population Health Strategy

“Drugs don’t work in people that don’t take them. Taking your medications as they are prescribed, the right dosage, at the right time of day for the right amount of days is called Medication Adherence. Approximately 50% of people don’t take their medications the way they are supposed to, which means they are not getting the full benefit of that treatment” says Wirick.

Why does this happen?

“Some people don’t feel like their medications are working, some people are concerned or anxious about potential side effects or they might find it difficult to take the medication if they have to use an inhaler or self inject or the cost may be a factor and for some people they just simply forget!”

“Taking care of your health is a team effort. It is important to talk to your doctor or pharmacist about your medications and concerns that you might have. One way that you can do this is by scheduling a medication checkup or “brown bag”. What this is, is that you take all of your medications put them into a bag this includes your prescription medications, over the counter, herbal, supplements anything that you take on a regular basis or once in a while for your health and review that with your doctor pharmacist.”

“Medication checkup can be very beneficial, it can help you to identify ways that you maybe incorrectly taking your medications, it might simplify your regiment by finding things you no longer need to take. If you are having a difficult time remembering to refill your medications, we may be able to get you set up with extended day supply.”

Medication Adherence, what can you do?

“Taking your medications at the same time every day as prescribed. Taking your medications along with something else you do every day, like brushing your teeth. You could use a pill box which could help you separate your medications by the day of the week. Also using a medication calendar can be helpful, not only does it tell you if you haven’t taken your medication but it can also tell you if you did, so that you don’t accidently double up on your dose. Also using technology can be helpful either by setting a reminder alarm on your phone or downloading a medication reminder app. And you can always ask people close to you to help you remember to take your medications.”

NOW CLINIC

When you are sneezing or coughing or itching or scratching or generally not feeling yourself there’s a way to feel better faster, the NowClinic app from Southwest Medical Associates part of OptumCare.

Just click from home or wherever you are! Using your computer's webcam, your smartphone or tablet next thing you know you are speaking face to face with a medical provider to get the help you need, including getting prescriptions filled.

Suddenly you are well on your way to A-OK! NowClinic is available 24/7 and you never need an appointment. In fact, the wait is typically less than 10 minutes.

NowClinic from Southwest Medical. Sick? Click! Download the app at nowclinic.com, from the app store or Google Play store today!

Health Plan of Nevada, Sierra Health and Life and now Senior Dimensions accepted.

ANNUAL PREVENTATIVE SCREENINGS

Getting older means getting wiser but it may also mean we need a little more maintenance. Think of it like a classic car, better with age if given the proper care. Southwest Medical Associates wants you to know that when you feel your best, so do we! We want you to maintain the healthy lifestyle that keeps you in mint condition but we also know that it can take work. Cars don’t give themselves oil changes after all!

As your partner in health, Southwest Medical recommends annual preventative screenings and tests and you might need some medication, your doctor will remind of these things to keep you on the road to better health and don’t forget about your annual flu shot it will keep you running in top condition.

And if your doctor recommends medication for diabetes, cholesterol or blood pressure take is as a directive to keep you pumped for the future.

If you are living with diabetes getting a retinol eye exam, kidney function lab test and blood sugar A1C test each year will help keep life sweet.

The early bird gets the worm and the help they may need sooner.

Women over 40 years old should get a breast cancer screening every year to detect any problems as soon as possible. If you are between 50 and 75 years old did you know you should have one of three available screening tests for colon cancer?

Our dedicated lifestyle providers have specialized equipment to do a full-service check-up and get you on the road to good health. Ask your doctor which one is right for you. And if you are not quite sure what you’ll need when coming to the Lifestyle Center for an annual wellness exam, it’s like running a diagnostic test on your car!

Life is a journey and Southwest Medical wants to be with you along the way. Visit smalv.com for all the way we help keep you at your best as well as well as a complete list of important health screening and tests.

Southwest Medical Associates, better for everyone!


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