As a part of the Neighbourhood Pharmacy Association of Canada's Healthcare Closer to Home campaign, pharmacist and pharmacy manager Janet Leung gave Barrie MPP Ann Hoggarth a tour of the Rexall pharmacy, and shared details about the range of patient services pharmacists provide, on Friday morning.
In 2012, Ontario passed regulations enabling pharmacists to deliver minor treatments and counselling to patients in their communities. These changes mean that pharmacists can now administer flu shots, initiate therapies for smoking cessation, demonstrate how to administer injection or inhalation prescriptions, provide wellness counselling and support for chronic conditions, as well as refill or adapt prescriptions.
Hoggarth helped demonstrate a blood-pressure test, something Leung does often for patients. The pharmacy also hosts clinics where patients can walk in for a blood pressure or blood glucose test.
The expanded scope of practice means pharmacists can use their expertise to provide on the spot treatment and guidance to patients.
Leung says there is still more pharmacists could do, such as administer other routine vaccines beyond the flu shot, as well as prescribe for common ailments, like cold sores or back pain.
Health Minister Eric Hoskins announced in the spring that the Ontario government is currently considering adding additional vaccinations to pharmacists' services.