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article imageNova Scotia pharmacists to offer broader prescription services

By Kevin Jess     Jan 28, 2010 in Health
The Nova Scotia government has approved changes to pharmacy regulations that will broaden prescription services allowing druggists more powers in order to better serve residents of the province.
Pharmacists in Nova Scotia will not only be able to fill and refill prescriptions as prescribed by a doctor but they will also be able to refill, adjust and extend prescriptions if they deem necessary.
They will also be able to prescribe certain drugs for minor ailments so that they can be covered by patients' insurance plans.
Nova Scotia Health Minister Maureen MacDonald said in a press release, "These new regulations will ensure that Nova Scotians can get the medicines they need even if they can't get to their doctor right away. By more completely using the competencies of pharmacists, the regulations will improve access and create efficiencies in the health-care system."
Susan Wedlake, registrar of the Nova Scotia College of Pharmacists said in the release, "Pharmacists are the experts in drug therapy and they have always used their knowledge and skills to select and provide appropriate medication to their patients, but in a limited manner. This regulation will allow pharmacists to more fully utilize their medication management expertise in the interest of the health and well-being of Nova Scotians."
Ms. Wedlake told the Chronicle Herald, "the changes will help relieve the huge demands on the health-care system."
Pharmacists will be required to notify the person who prescribed the medication when making changes.
Although the legislation was passed this week, it will take some time to go into effect as the province will allow the college of pharmacists time to develop standards of practice for further changes to pharmacists' work. The standards are likely to be completed by this fall.
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia supports the new legislation.
Dr. Cameron Little, the college's registrar and CEO said in the press release, "This is an excellent example of how collaboration among health professions can better serve the needs of patients without compromising safety."
More about Nova Scotia, Pharmacist, Prescription, Drugs
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