Happy National Pharmacists Month! The goal of this month is
to recognize pharmacists for the significant role they play in effective
medication management, patient education and overall medication safety. Learn
more about how pharmacists can help you every day.
Safe and Effective Medication Use
Pharmacists help ensure that medications control conditions
the right way. They help minimize any side effects and safeguard against any
possible interactions with other medications that lead to more expensive health
care costs such as emergency room visits, hospitalization, etc.
Did you know that more than 300,000 immunization-trained
pharmacists administer vaccines, and nearly one in four adults receive their
influenza vaccinations at their community pharmacy?1 Pharmacists can
provide guidance on all vaccine-preventable diseases and which immunizations
are best for you.
OTCs and Supplements
Pharmacists are experts in prescription medications,
supplements and over the counter medications. They can tell you about potential
interactions with foods, other drugs, or dietary supplements. And they can help
you pick the perfect product. With over 100,000 over-the-counter products on
the market, your pharmacist is always there to lend a helping hand!1
Did you know that pharmacists are experts and more than just
medications? They are trained and educated in how to manage conditions as
a whole. Tria Health has pharmacists who are certified diabetic educators on
staff. This allows them to treat the person rather than the
medication. They focus on non-pharmacy and pharmacy strategies to accomplish
control of a disease.
Tria Health’s Pharmacists
Tria Health was founded on the belief that pharmacists play
a vital role in the management of high-risk patients that drive the majority of
health care spend. If Tria Health is currently a part of your healthcare plan,
call the Tria Health Help desk today for any of your medication-related
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is alerting
health care professionals and patients to a voluntary recall of
over-the-counter (OTC) ranitidine tablets (75 mg and 150 mg), labeled by
Walgreens, Walmart, and Rite-Aid and manufactured by Apotex Corp. This
medication is being recalled due to low levels of a nitrosamine impurity. The
agency encourages patients and health care professionals to report any adverse
reaction to the FDA’s MedWatch
Why is it being recalled?
NDMA is classified as a probable human carcinogen
(a substance that could cause cancer) based on results from laboratory tests.
NDMA is a known environmental contaminant and found in water and foods,
including meats, dairy products and vegetables.
What products are recalled?
The affected Ranitidine Hydrochloride Capsule can
be identified by NDC numbers stated on the product label. The affected Sandoz
Ranitidine includes 30 count, 60 count and 500 count bottles in the following
lots. The product can be identified by the NDC number and lot number provided
above. Sandoz Ranitidine Hydrochloride Capsules were distributed nationwide to
FDA is not recommending individuals stop taking all ranitidine medicines at this time.
Consumers taking OTC ranitidine could consider using other OTC products approved for their condition.
Patients taking prescription ranitidine who wish to discontinue use should talk to their health care professional about other treatment options. Multiple drugs are approved for the same or similar uses as ranitidine.
Contact your Tria Health pharmacist today for
additional assistance with the recall process: 1.888.799.8742
We’re all aware that most medications can have a
variety of side effects, but did you know that one of them can be an increased
sensitivity to the sun? There are a multitude of medications that can increase
your risk of sunburn or even cause photosensitivity. Summer is here, so be sure
you’re prepared to stay safe in the sun!
How can a medication increase your sensitivity
to the sun?1
Photosensitivity is a reaction set off by the
sun’s ultraviolet rays and can result in two different reactions.
Phototoxic Reaction: Occurs when UV radiation reacts with a drug to form compounds that damage the skin.
Results: Sunburn-like symptoms
Photoallergic Reaction: This is less common, but usually happens when UV light changes a substance applied to the skin, causing an immune response.
Results: Bumps, hives, blisters, or red blotches
What are some common drugs that cause sunburns?
Antiarrhythmics (cardiac drugs)
Diuretics (used to treat hypertension, heart
failure or edema)
It’s time for some fun in the sun, vacation season
is here! While relaxing on the beach sounds like a great way to spend a week,
getting there can be stressful especially if you have a chronic condition. It’s
hard to keep all the airport regulations straight, and we know you want to get
through as fast as possible. Here are some helpful tips to get your medications
packed and ready to go for your well-deserved vacation!
Make sure to check your medication supply in
advance. It’s important to give yourself and your pharmacy enough time to
refill your medication if you’re running low. If you’re taking a long trip, and
your insurance provider will not issue extra doses to you, talk to your
physician. Your doctor should be able to work with your insurance company and
pharmacy to get you the extra medications you need. If you take any
over-the-counter medications, be sure you have enough of them on hand, too.1
Schedule your Dosing
Time changes can impact when you need to take your
medications. You can always talk with your doctor or your pharmacist to create
a dosage schedule. It can also help to set an alarm on your phone to help you
keep track of your dosage times and wake up during the night.
TSA does not require passengers to have
medications in prescription bottles, but states have individual laws regarding
the labeling of prescription medication with which passengers need to comply.
You can bring your medication in pill or solid
form in unlimited amounts as long as it is screened.
Medication in liquid form is allowed in carry-on
bags in excess of 3.4 ounces in reasonable quantities for the flight. It is not
necessary to place medically required liquids in a zip-top bag. However, you
must tell the officer that you have medically necessary liquids at the start of
the screening checkpoint process. Medically required liquids will be subject to
additional screening that could include being asked to open the container.
You can travel with your medication in both
carry-on and checked baggage. It’s highly recommended you place these items in
your carry-on in the event that you need immediate access.
Tria Health is Here to Help
Have any questions regarding your medications and
traveling? If Tria Health is offered through your benefits plan, you have the
option of receiving a one-on-one private consultation with one of Tria Health’s
pharmacists over the phone. During your consultation, your pharmacist can answer
any of your medication-related questions.
It’s important to review your current medication
regimen on a yearly basis with a clinician. Older adults are taking a multitude
of pills, with 66 percent taking five or more and 27 percent taking 10 or more.1
Some of these medications may not even be necessary anymore. While most people
rely on their primary physician, “physicians often don’t have enough
information about what patients are taking, or may lack the time to talk to
patients about these medications.”1 So who can patients talk to
about their medications? Pharmacists.
One in Five Older Adults are on an Inappropriate Medication
While medications can be extremely beneficial in
managing chronic conditions, taking multiple medications at once can create
some risk. About one-third of adverse events in hospitalizations include a
drug-related harm, leading to longer hospital stays and greater expense. The
National Academy of Medicine estimated that there are 400,000 preventable
adverse drug events in hospitals each year, costing $3.5 billion. At least one in five older patients are on an inappropriate
medication — one that they can do without or that can be switched to a
different, safer drug.2
Improves Overall Care
Pharmacists do so much more than just dispense
prescriptions. They have a wealth of knowledge to assist patients with safe
medication use, potential drug interactions as well as preventative services
and over the counter medications. There have been a multitude of studies
conducted over the years measuring patient improvement when a pharmacist is
included as part of the care team working with the physician. In a recent
in JAMA, patients were randomly assigned to two groups. With one group,
pharmacists gave both patients and their physicians educational materials on
the specific drug that might have been inappropriately prescribed. The control
group got the usual care, with no educational materials. Within six months, 43
percent of the patients in the intervention group had stopped taking one of the
selected medicines. The corresponding figure was 12 percent in the control group.
Tria Health’s Pharmacists
Tria Health was founded on the belief that
pharmacists play a vital role in the management of high-risk patients that
drive the majority of health care spend. If Tria Health is currently a part of
your healthcare plan, call the Tria Health Help desk today for any of your