Home Health & Food Ask questions when buying medications, pharmacist urges Nigerians

Ask questions when buying medications, pharmacist urges Nigerians

by James Davies


Amarachi Okeh

A pharmacist, Olatunji Adeogo has urged Nigerians to always ask questions when they go to purchase medications, noting that they should start showing interest in knowing about the drugs they buy.

The pharmacist lamented that many Nigerians are usually not interested in learning about the drugs they are taking, hence they are exposed to some avoidable drug interactions and side effects.

Speaking with PUNCH HealthWise in a chat, Adeogo who works with Alpha Pharmacy and Stores, stated that it is important for Nigerians to get their medications from only hospital pharmacies or reputable pharmacies, stressing that drugs should not be seen as and purchased like an article of trade.

Nigerians, he said, should know that “it is their right to ask questions about their medications and they should patronise only reputable pharmacies for drugs.

“They should be patient enough to ask the pharmacist questions so that they can be properly educated on how to take their drugs, and what to take them with to avoid interactions and side effects.”

He noted that while doctors are the experts in diagnosing illnesses, pharmacists are the experts in understanding drugs, possible effects, interactions, and so on.

He said, “Pharmacists are usually the people that the patients go to when the doctor has prescribed their medication because the prescription is usually a note to the pharmacist.

“So, once a doctor writes that prescription, it is to be taken to a pharmacist who will now interpret it and tell the patient the possible side effects, the way the drugs should be taken, how the drugs should be taken, and all that.”

The pharmacist stated that patients should know that asking questions from a pharmacist is their right no matter how long it takes until they receive clarity, noting that only a few people show interest in making such inquiries. 

“Majority of patients do not ask questions when buying medications. They just come, buy and go without asking questions. This is wrong because some drug-to-drug interactions could be in the prescription that the pharmacist is supposed to clarify but people are often not patient enough.

“There are also some disease conditions that react to some medications so once a patient receives a prescription, the person is supposed to come to the pharmacists and ask questions until they are satisfied with the response.

“The most important part of the medical process, for me, is the one that pertains to the things you are going to ingest into your body, so you are supposed to be patient enough to listen to the expert in that area.

“The doctor has seen and diagnosed what you have, but the last part, which is different from the diagnosis, is where people are usually not patient. They just rush in to get their medication and rush out and it shouldn’t be so,” Adeogo said.

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