The King Review and Complementary Medicines

The King Review poses some interesting questions to Australians about the role of community pharmacy, and more especially the pharmacist, in selling, recommending and prescribing complementary medicines.
If you feel that you can play a role in advising your patients on this modality, then get active…….
If you don’t, then your patients will miss out, leaving the skeptics, cynics and doom and destruction advocates to have their way.
They’ve had a (temporary) win with homeopathics and you can expect further efforts to denigrate and shame any pharmacist who wishes to give the best professional advice to his or her patients.

In my view, you can’t be half-hearted about this – that’s why current issues surrounding complementary medicines have arisen. I know many pharmacists who are delighted to sell these products and bank the dollars. No longer is that good enough – that’s what Coles and Woolies do!

The opportunities for education arise frequently. Simply joining the Blackmores Institute or any other professional development site, will offer opportunities in the wellness area that will delight you.

The illness model is overcrowded – our patients don’t want to be there, but the current pharmacy model seems to encourage that illness outcome. Take your pills at the right time, and you’ll get better. Really? Who gets ”better”? When? The patients I see just get an ever-increasing number of prescribed medications with the absolute blessing of their local dispensing pharmacist. No questions asked. No CMI given. No suggestions. No initiative taken.

Ask any patient if they would like advice on how to maximize their quality of life, reduce their medication-induced nutritional deficiencies and become empowered in their health, and watch them smile.

Other health practitioners are starting to see the opportunities here. Degree-qualified naturopaths now receive detailed education on integrative pharmacology. They are demanding information on the interplay between prescribed medications and nutritional options. They want to hold their patient’s hand to accompany, to advise and to professional communicate on their behalf, so that the best outcome possible is achieved.

Australians expect their pharmacists to understand the issues around the therapeutic use of nutritional substances.

Are you willing and able?

Can you rise to the challenge?


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