Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Pharmacists welcome more time with patients

Pharmacists would love to meet with their patients every year to discuss drug interactions and negative side effects, but some fear they lack the time and money to follow through with the Ontario government's new service, their association warned Tuesday.

Legislation passed by the Liberal government last summer set aside $50 million to allow patients who take three or more medications can book a 30-minute annual consultation with their pharmacist to ensure they're taking the drugs properly.

But the new law also puts a squeeze on pharmacists because it reduces the amount of cash they can get from dispensing generic drugs, said Ken Burns, chairman of the Ontario Pharmacists' Association.

"It's a question of whether pharmacists will have the time and the resources to actually be able to do this," Burns said as Health Minister George Smitherman launched the province's new MedsCheck program at a news conference. ...more

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