Friday, August 12, 2011

Community Service

Posted by Eric Zhao at Friday, August 12, 2011

Ahh yes, the community rotation. Many of you already know the rigors of a retail pharmacy, so I will spare you the redundancy. FYI, I am rotating at a medium-volume pharmacy that I won't name (due to their corporate policies; again, I know...). Ask me in person if you want details.

Immediately after walking in, I knew why many patients decide to stay loyal to this pharmacy. The team here prides itself on efficiency and rapport. The pharmacists and techs all know the patients by name and have an all-around jolly good time joking around and causing all sorts of shenanigans. This is, of course, while maintaining patient safety and filling scripts accurately.

In this post, I will go over an awesome prescription software feature and the monthly health fair.

The Four-Point Check
In the workflow, this pharmacy software includes a "four-point check" where the pharmacy checks the 1) patient name, 2) drug, 3) strength, and 4) directions, because these are where errors can have the most impact. Then it goes into technician filling and another final check by the pharmacist before being verified.

Four-Point Verification before Filling

I've worked at three different retail pharmacies before and this procedure is new to me. If the other chains aren't doing this, then I suggest they man up before someone gets hurt.

Health Fair
It's a Saturday morning and I graciously volunteered to help out at the monthly health fair. The topics vary each month and this health fair tested for blood pressure, blood glucose, and vision.

Blood Pressure Testing Machine

Blood Glucose Monitor

Snellen Chart for Vision

Amsler Grid
(Normal Vision)

Amsler Grid
(As seen by a person with age-related macular degeneration)

We spent a good four hours utilizing our pharmacy knowledge to analyze results and encourage people to make lifestyle changes. And, because I know you care, here are my results:

Blood Pressure: 133/89
Blood Glucose (post-prandial): 110
Vision: 20/30 with glasses
Amsler Grid: No macular degeneration!

My BP is a bit high for my liking, but I'm still at goal (<140/90). I blame the economy. I'm happy with a glucose of 110 (post-prandial! AKA "After eating" for the lay person). Looks like I need to upgrade my glasses though...but I don't have macular degeneration! I'll wait until I'm over 50 y/o for that one, thanks.

Until next time, cheers!
-Eric Zhao

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