Lake Regional Health System celebrates American Pharmacists Month to honor the invaluable contributions of its pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.
In addition to preparing and dispensing medicines, pharmacists work to improve medication use. They review medications to look for potentially dangerous drug interactions, as well as duplications and less expensive alternatives. Pharmacists also educate patients about their medications.
Pharmacy services at Lake Regional include five retail pharmacies — located in Osage Beach, Camdenton, Eldon, Lake Ozark and Laurie — and a hospital pharmacy.
Lake Regional pharmacists focus on patient care and customer service. All five Lake Regional Pharmacy locations offer a comprehensive $4 list of generic medications; online refills; medication synchronization; free home and work deliveries; and phone and text reminders. In addition, all Lake Regional pharmacists are certified to administer vaccinations.
"Our pharmacists are highly valued for their knowledge and ability to relate to our customers," said Stacie Ling, director of Lake Regional's retail pharmacies. "Each pharmacist strives to make a difference by helping our patients improve their health. Our pharmacists do this through coaching and educating patients on the importance of being compliant, or taking their medications as directed. Lake Regional pharmacists take the time to get to know their patients and to educate them."
Lake Regional's hospital pharmacy is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week for emergency room, surgery, oncology, outpatient infusions and inpatient medication needs. Pharmacists work with physicians and nurses to ensure that medication orders are safe and effective for patients of all ages and health levels, and they help minimize medication interactions and unwanted side effects. Hospital pharmacists also help ensure home medications are continued when appropriate and provide drug monitoring and information services to hospital staff and patients.
"You may not see a hospital pharmacist while at the hospital, but they work hard in the background to evaluate and verify every medication order that patients receive," said Mike Dow, PharmD, director of Lake Regional's hospital pharmacy. "They provide an extra level of safety and expertise to the entire health care team and help patients achieve high-quality outcomes."
Pharmacy technicians are important to the operation of both retail and hospital pharmacies. These health care workers help pharmacists dispense prescription medication to customers or health professionals. Many Lake Regional pharmacy technicians are nationally certified, which shows their level of commitment and engagement with the ever-changing pharmacy field.
Free Help with Medicare
This fall, Lake Regional Pharmacy is providing free help with choosing the right Medicare Part D plan. Appointments are available at all five retail pharmacy locations. For more information about Lake Regional Pharmacy, visit www.lakeregional.com/pharmacy.
Questions to Ask Your Pharmacist
The American Pharmacists Association recommends all patients ask their pharmacists the following questions about their medications, including over-the-counter products.
- What is the name of my medication? What is it supposed to do?
- When and how should I take my medication?
- What if I forget to take my medication?
- How long should I take it?
- What about taking other medications or drinking alcohol at the same time?
- Should I change my activities?
- Could this medication give me an allergic reaction?
- Should I expect any side effects?
- What if I'm pregnant or breast-feeding?
- How should I store my medications?