9 OCTOBER 2015
BE MEDICINEWISE WEEK 2015: YOU’RE NEVER TOO EARLY/SMALL/COOL/BUSY/OLD TO BE MEDICINEWISE
Be Medicinewise Week 2015 runs next week from 12-18 October, encouraging Australians to be medicinewise at all ages and life stages.
Now in its fifth year, Be Medicinewise Week reminds Australians about the importance of using medicines safely and appropriately. Throughout the week there will be a daily emphasis on the importance of using medicines at different ‘ages and life stages’, including when pregnant and breastfeeding, what to think about when you’re a teenager, when medicines become a regular part of life and medicines as you age. Be Medicinewise Week ambassador Jimmy Rees (popular children’s entertainer Jimmy Giggle from ABC Kids) will help raise awareness around the importance of giving medicine to children safely.
Karen Kaye from NPS MedicineWise says, “For many of us medicines are a regular part of life that we may not think much about. Be Medicinewise Week is a great opportunity to stop and check what we understand about our medicines, how we use them and how medicinewise we are.”
Recent polling of 1,000 Australian adults* shows that many of those surveyed are taking prescription medicines regularly and often managing multiple numbers of medicines. The results of this survey provide a snapshot on the use of medicines in Australia and, with so many people taking medicine (prescription, over-the-counter or complementary) on a regular basis, serves as a reminder about why it is important to be medicinewise.
Key findings about prescription medicine use:
* 83% of the respondents aged 65 and older took prescription medicine every day
* 29% of respondents aged 50 or older took 7 or more prescription medicines regularly
* 43% of Gen X (35-49) respondents reported taking 3 or more prescription medicines regularly
* 45% of Gen Y (18-34) respondents reported taking one prescription medicine regularly.
Key findings about medicines in the home:
* 13% of respondents had more than 20 different types of medicines stored at home
* 39% of respondents conceded that some to most of the medicines in their home may be out of date
* 25% of respondents said they had knowingly taken a medicine that was out of date.
Key findings about where medicine is being purchased:
* 86% of respondents had purchased over-the counter medicine at a pharmacy within the past year
* Complementary medicine is more likely to be bought at a pharmacy (51%), and many also reported making purchases at supermarkets (37%), health stores (21%), and online (11%).
“Medicines can be harmful if they are not taken as directed”, says Ms Kaye. “For people taking multiple medicines, side effects, interactions between medicines, accidental overdosing and forgetting to take medicines can easily become issues.”
“Be Medicinewise Week reminds Australians of the importance of getting into good habits with their medicines—from cleaning out the medicine cabinet to communicating with their health professionals about all the medicines they take and making sure these are regularly reviewed.”
Note: Be Medicinewise Week photo and interview opportunity on Tuesday 13 October 2015
Be Medicinewise Week ambassador Jimmy Rees (Jimmy Giggle from ABC KIDS) will be attending a Be Medicinewise Week event to encourage better understanding of the importance of giving medicines to children safely. Jimmy Rees will be available for interview and will be leading attendees in ‘Australia’s largest kids’ weigh in’ to raise awareness of the importance of dosing by age and weight. The event will be held at North Sydney Community Centre Playgroup from 10:45am on Tuesday 13 October 2015. RSVP your attendance to firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Online survey of 1,000 adults undertaken by Galaxy Research for NPS MedicineWise 17-20 September, 2015.
6 October 2015
Be Medicinewise Campaign
Next week is Be Medicinewise Week 2015, and throughout the week, the campaign will focus on encouraging Australians to ‘be medicinewise at all ages and life stages’.
Now in its fifth year, Be Medicinewise Week reminds Australians about the importance of quality use of medicines.
The toolkit provides useful information about the campaign, how to get involved, and has links to downloadable campaign resources including posters and fact sheets.
The ‘ages and life stages’ of focus across the campaign week are:
Monday 12 October: Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Tuesday 13 October: How to be medicinewise with children
Wednesday 14 October: Teenagers and going out on your own
Thursday 15 October: When medicines are part of your life
Friday 16 October: Medicines as we age
More detailed information will be released across the campaign week. I have also attached a campaign image to this email for you to use.
Be Medicinewise Week photo and interview opportunity:
Be Medicinewise Week ambassador Jimmy Rees (Jimmy Giggle from ABC Kids) will be attending a Be Medicinewise Week event to encourage better understanding of the importance of giving medicines to children safely. Jimmy Rees will be available for interview at North Sydney Community Centre from 10:45am on Tuesday 14 October 2015 and will be leading attendees in Australia’s largest weigh in (to raise awareness of the importance of dosing by weight and age). RSVP your attendance to email@example.com or let us know if you would like to be sent photos of the event.
Please get in touch if you would like any further information ahead of the campaign.