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Disability and Medical Issues For MCS and Allergy - Medications

Information on medications

See the ASEHA Leaflet: Need to take a medication: some things you may need to consider.

Many MCS sufferers have problems with medications so there is a need to take care when these are being prescribed.  Good two-way communication with your GP should minimise any adverse reactions but don’t forget your pharmacist is also knowledgeable about medications and is another professional person with whom you should cultivate good two-way communication.

Information about medications

Clear information about what the medication is called and what it is for it is essential while your taking instructions should always be in written format.  As most medications have Consumer Medicine Information sheets you can ask your doctor or pharmacist for a print out and this will give you further information about how the medication works, how to take it, how long you need to take it and any side effects or adverse reactions that can occur and when you need to seek help.  Never hesitate to ask for written information about your medications.  If something about the medication bothers you – ask your GP or Pharmacist.  Other sources of information about medications are the Medicines Line 1300 888 763 and your local Community Health Centre.

Keep track of your medications

Keeping track of your medications will assist to ensure that you take the right medication at the right time and avoid medication related problems.  If you are taking multiple medications, use an organiser to store one day or one week’s supply of medicine in compartments.  If you tend to be a tad forgetful, the organiser will allow you to see whether or not you have taken your dose on the right day and at the right time.  If you suspect you are experiencing side-effects from your medication, keep a diary of the symptoms to discuss with your GP or Pharmacist.  Alternatively, you can call the Medicines Line.

What to do with unwanted medications

Check all of the out-of-date or unwanted medications in your house because they can pose a risk of accidental poisoning in a house where there are children.  Do not flush these down the toilet, sink, or place them in the rubbish bin for disposal as they can finish up in the environment.  Instead take them to any pharmacy and they will dispose of them safely for you as part of the government funded return of unwanted medicine (RUM) scheme.

Some useful information

Consumer medicine information leaflets. These are available for most prescription and some non-prescription medications.  They explain how the medicine works, how and when to take it, common side effects and interactions.  Available from your pharmacist, Medicines Line or the NPS website

Home Medicines Review. A Home Medicines Review involves a Pharmacist visiting your home to discuss your medications.  Your GP will receive a report from the Pharmacist after the visit.  Talk to your GP or Pharmacist if you want more information on a Home Medicines Review

Medication organisers.  These are plastic boxes with compartments that hold your daily dose of medication for a week.  Some organisers you fill yourself, others eg a Webster-pak are filled by your pharmacy.  Ask your pharmacist for more information.

National Prescribing Service (NPS) medicines list. An NPS medicines list will keep an up-to-date-record of all of the medications you take.  You should carry one of these at all times in case of emergencies and whenever you visit your doctor, pharmacist, health center or hospital.  Lists are available in various languages for those of non-English speaking backgrounds.  Copies are available from the NPS website at

Medicines Line. If you have questions about your medications you can ring the Medicines Line on

1300 888 763 to talk to a pharmacist about your prescription, over–the-counter medication or complementary medicines for the cost of a local call (mobiles extra)  The service runs from 9 am to 6 pm Monday-Friday (EST).

Questions to ask about your medications. A reminder list of questions to ask your doctor of pharmacist is available from the NPS website

Reference. Medicines Talk  Spring 2008




Last Updated (Friday, 20 November 2009 02:09)