What is Medication Management?
Medication management is a technique for ensuring a person’s medication needs are being met. It involves being aware of all medications being used by a patient, the correct dosage, and the frequency of dosage. In addition, because a person may see multiple doctors for different medical issues, medication management is taking time to ensure all medications are working toward a patient’s best outcome.
The Medication Management Process
Medication management is an outpatient treatment strategy. Medication management starts with an evaluation of a person’s medication needs. Next, caregivers carefully review a person’s prescriptions to find possible side effects that each could cause. In some cases, patients are taking medications that no longer produce the most beneficial results. Other times, a person may need to be prescribed a new medication. Sometimes, after assessing all of the medications a person is taking, it is discovered that two or more medications react in an undesired way. In this scenario, we can find a substitute medication.
After the initial medication evaluation, all medications continue to be monitored. Prescription medications and over-the-counter medications must be observed. This attention to detail ensures that negative medication interactions will not be a problem. Monitoring also ensures medications are not causing harmful effects on a person’s quality of life. The goal of medication management is to achieve the best outcome for the patient.
The truth is, that most patients do not have medical training. This can make it difficult to understand how their medication can affect their overall health and recovery process. Taking medications at the correct time is an example of something patients often struggle with. Taking the correct dosage can be a struggle, especially when multiple medications are involved. Therefore, an essential part of medication management is creating a system that helps patients use their medications for the best results.
During medication management, staff will observes a patient’s habits with their prescription and over-the-counter medications. Medication management allows healthcare providers to evaluate a patient's use of over-the-counter medications, prescription medications, vitamins, and other supplements. These evaluations give healthcare providers insight into why medications may not be helping a person achieve the best results.
At times, the correct medications are being used but not being used correctly. For example, patients may take an incorrect dosage or take their medications at the wrong time. These oversights can decrease the effectiveness of a person’s medication or cause unwanted side effects. Medication management looks at what medications are used and how they are used. In this way, medication management increases positive outcomes for patients.
Why is Medication Management Important?
Medication management acknowledges that many people struggle to take their medications correctly. When taking multiple medications, it can be easy to swap the directions from one medication to another, often with decreased wellness as the outcome. Medications are most effective when taken as prescribed. Medication management helps a person create a plan to maximize their medication's benefit.
Medication management ensures that all medications work together for the good of the patient. Over-the-counter medications, prescription medications, and supplements should work together to help a patient achieve maximum wellness. In addition, medication management seeks to eliminate harmful side effects or undesired interactions between medications. As a result, medication management in a person’s treatment leads to an increased likelihood of positive outcomes.
How to Manage Multiple Medications
Medication management is a team effort between trained professionals and patients working together to best utilize medications for healing and wholeness. After the medication plan is made, it is up to the patient to carry it out. Many practical tips will help a person take their medication correctly and receive the maximum benefit from it.
Following the doctor’s instructions when taking medication is essential. These instructions are often printed on the bottle of medication. It will inform you of the correct dosage and how often to take the medication. It will also specify if a person should take the medication with food. It is best not to guess when it comes to medication. Take medications as prescribed to take advantage of their maximum benefits.
If you take multiple medications, get them all filled at the same pharmacy. Doing this creates an additional layer of medication management; the local pharmacist. When filling your prescriptions, the pharmacist will be able to notice if any of the medications interact with one another. They will be able to notify you and collaborate with you and your doctor to find a more appropriate medication.
Do not wait until the last minute to get your medication refilled. This can create a scenario where you have to go without a prescription for a day or more. Skipping a dose or suddenly stopping your medication can cause undesirable symptoms, so plan and refill your medication with plenty of time to ensure there’s no gap.
Only the person taking the medication can know how it makes them feel. If any new side effects develop, talk to your doctor. They will be able to determine if a person is reacting to one or more medications. Some may be hesitant to speak up, but remember, you are not a bother or a burden. It is your healthcare provider's job to ensure your medication is giving you the maximum benefit. They can not do this without your insight.
A reminder about medications can be useful to many people. You can post it where you look every day, such as on the refrigerator. Whatever method you choose, visual reminders are a great way to make sure you do not forget your medication.
Many people find success with a pill dispenser. This is a special container that holds a person’s daily pills. For example, at the start of a week, a person can put a week's worth of pills in the container and they’re measured out appropriately. Most pill dispensers have separate compartments for morning and evening medications. A pill dispenser makes taking medication correctly easier for many people.
If you use multiple medications, you should have a list of medications you can take to all appointments. If you are seeing numerous healthcare providers, they may not know every medication you are currently prescribed. Giving them access to this information at every appointment helps to ensure that they will not prescribe a medication that interacts negatively with one of your other medications.
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The Five Rights of Medication Administration
The first right of medication administration is to ensure it’s given to the right patient. When attending to the medication needs of many patients, it’s easy to get two patients mixed up, but this is unacceptable every time. Those providing medication management are committed to accurately distributing medications to patients.
Patients also have a right to the correct medication. Healthcare professionals who prescribe medications must be committed to educating themselves about new drugs and how they interact with other medicines. They must also commit to providing the most helpful medication for that particular person.
Providing the right dose is crucial to treating a person’s condition. Any medication can be toxic if enough is ingested. Therefore, medical professionals are committed to accurately giving a person the correct dose to help them achieve healing.
The right route means the correct way of ingesting a medication. Healthcare providers are committed to helping patients take their medicine the correct way. Some ways to administer medication are orally in liquid or pill form, topical as a lotion, or as an injection.
Medication administration happens on a schedule. Therefore, medication should be taken at the right time for maximum effectiveness. Our healthcare providers are committed to helping you understand the ins and outs of your medication, its schedule, what to do if you forget to take it at the right time, and any other questions you might have.
Medication Management at Curative Behavioral
The staff at Curative Behavioral are passionate about helping patients get the most out of their medications. For more information about how medication management can put you on the path to wellness, contact us today at 877-781-5821.