Every Monday The Times looks at topics affecting your health. If you have a topic or issue you would like to see covered in our weekly series, contact senior content editor Edie Rogers via e-mail.
If you are constantly forgetting which medication you are supposed to take after lunch and which one you need before bed, Dixie City Pharmacy may have a solution for you.
The Gainesville pharmacy has recently launched the My Dose Alert program. After enrolling in the free program at the pharmacy on Jesse Jewell Parkway, patients can receive automatic reminders via telephone call, e-mail or text message.
“Patients or clients may enroll by coming into Dixie City Pharmacy, asking us about My Dose Alert and signing up for free right on the spot. They do not have to be clients of ours. It is open to all citizens regardless of which pharmacy they frequent,” said Eddie Mimbs, Dixie City pharmacist.
“The reminders can be as frequent as needed for dosing, depending on each person’s needs. It can be once or several times daily as needed.”
According to the National Pharmacists Association, more than $290 billion in annual health care costs, 125,000 deaths a year and 15 percent of hospital visits are related to patients not taking their medications properly, Mimbs said.
“My Dose Alert is very valuable because patients taking medications incorrectly will not get the desired results,” he said. “Physicians will determine that the medication is not working properly and may change the medication or dosage, possibly leading to a more expensive drug or uncomfortable side effects.”
When signing up for the service, patients should bring all of their medications with them so that pharmacy staff can help determine when the notifications should be sent to the patient.
“The people who would benefit the most are the ones taking a lot of medications and very busy people who don’t have time to keep track of medications and proper dosing,” said Mimbs.
“Whether for you, or a forgetful loved one, My Dose Alert will instantly remind a client when it’s time to take their medication.”
The My Dose Alert program is a concept of the National Community Pharmacists Association and the Pharmacy Development Services.
Dixie City is affiliated with both organizations.
“Pharmacists are the most accessible health care providers in the community and I feel that community pharmacists, such as us, must take a more active and caring role in the health of our patients,” Mimbs said.
“Most of the time we know our clients by name and it is a much more personal relationship than you will find at many variety stores. We care and we are bearing the expense of the project, not the patient. Hopefully people will take advantage of this ongoing opportunity to help alleviate this most serious problem.”