Posted by: Brendan Fraser4 NOV 2013
I checked my first item as a pharmacist last week. Itwas a prescription of paracetamol suspensionfor a one year old child. I remember a tutor telling some students that you'llalways remember checking your first item, then she rolled off what hers was. Iremember thinking how peculiar that was. Is it the fact that as pharmacists westudy for four years (three back in the day), complete a pre-registration yearand a sit a horrid exam for the privilege? Or is it because if you mess upchecking a prescription patient death and imprisonment may follow?
I'llprobably always remember mine though, as it was an under-dose. After signing offthe prescription and having a quick discussion with the parent, it got methinking about the whole checking process. For example I asked the parent ifthey were aware of any particularly reason why the prescriber had done this?When I received the answer and gave out the prescription with appropriateadvice, I wondered how it would have differed with access to clinical information.
I'vediscussed this concept in some of my previous blogs. I had a brief discussionwith the superintendent pharmacist about the idea who, although agreed,reminded me to consider the idea of not even being attached to the GP practice.To which I sort of smiled - halfhorrified at the prospect of not being next door to the prescriber and halfglad of the fact that I was. In truth, it's a bit frightening if you look moredeeply into it. But I suppose that's why community pharmacy has so much responsibility/pressuresmothering it.
I was interested to read that Jeremy Hunt hasannounced to create a database of NHS patients' records with a one billion pound technologyfund.The idea of a national database intrigues me and will cause widespread debateamongst the more liberal, but if seamless care is to ever exist, surely it is anecessity.
Communitypharmacists receiving discharge information has also been a topic that'sgrabbed my attention. With most NHS trusts now operating an electronicdischarge system there should be little reason why community pharmacists shouldnot receive this information. I remember during my pre-registration, I heard apatient complaining about the transfer of information, "Can't you justsend an email or something? It's the 21st century!". I remember smiling. If only bridging the gapsbetween secondary and primary care were that easy.