The importance of the relationship you have with your local pharmacy
When considering your local pharmacy, you probably think about the people who interpret a doctor’s indecipherable handwriting or the professionals that know just what over-the-counter medications help best for a cold.
Pharmacies have a more important function than this within communities, however. They play a key role in improving the health and wellness of South Africans – especially those without easy access to private doctors’ consultations.
Local pharmacies are often the first and only place some people go to for healthcare advice and help. This invaluable resource is easily accessible because it requires no appointment or booking, and advice is usually coupled with access to over-the-counter medication and valuable information.
They offer clinic services and screenings, vaccinations and immunisations, vitamin injections and supplements, as well as minor wound care and first aid assistance.
Family planning and conception advice
Care before, during, and after pregnancy is a vital component of human healthcare, and clinics at most local pharmacies allow expecting families to make contact with medical professionals who care.
Before falling pregnant, current medical conditions must be considered, as they may have an impact on the pregnancy. These conditions include diabetes, high blood pressure, and one’s HIV status. Local pharmacies can assist further by supporting in the following ways:
- Nutrition and wellness advice
At your local pharmacy, you can get trusted advice on food, supplements, and even lifestyle changes such as exercise and stress reduction. This means that not only is your wellness improved, but your baby’s future wellness too.
- Quicker links to other medical professionals
Your local clinic team usually have strong links with other health professionals and can refer you to a medical professional nearby who will partner with you during your pregnancy.
- Post-natal healthcare and support
Your local clinic will walk a road with you, even after your baby is born.
Pharmacies also offer essential screenings and follow-up management
Clinics offer a range of screening services, including:
- Blood glucose testing
- Blood pressure screening and monitoring
- HIV screening and testing
- Cholesterol screening
Having a pharmacy near you to rely on, also comes with several other benefits:
Because your pharmacy team knows your personal health situation, they can review your record, your medications, and your illnesses to choose the safest and most reliable over-the-counter medication for your needs.
Save money on expensive prescriptions
Your The Local choice Pharmacy can review your prescription, take a look at your medical aid and what it covers, and then make substitutions on the spot that are easier to take, cheaper, or more sensible for your needs.
Working with your physician
Most local pharmacies have a good working relationship with local doctors. If your physician prescribes something that doesn’t make sense for you, they may be able to contact your physician by telephone to have the prescription changed.
Checking basic vital statistics
While you’re in the pharmacy shopping or picking up medications, most local pharmacies can test your blood pressure, sugar, or even hormone levels on the spot and make a note of it on your file.
Many The Local choice Pharmacies provide access to hygiene products like shampoo, conditioner, makeup, feminine hygiene products, first aid supplies – even crutches, braces, and mobility aids, too. Rather than stopping at multiple locations for these products, you can shop for them all at the same time at your local pharmacy. Some local pharmacies even have a gift shop.
Quality customer service
Having a pharmacist that knows you by name, calls when your prescription is overdue and helps you locate the number 1 doctor-recommended over-the-counter cold medication while you hold a screaming toddler … these things are priceless.
Your pharmacist is a wealth of information. Don’t be afraid to ask when you visit. We are happy to help!
Disclaimer: All content on the The Local Choice Pharmacy is created and published online for informational purposes only. It is not intended to serve as a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health advice.