When treating patients of all ages, genders, and medical histories, pharmacists must consider the best practices on a case-by-case basis. However, adolescent patients often have additional clinical challenges — and even restrictions — that may be a bit harder to prepare for and address as a pharmacist. Here’s a look at some of the top challenges pharmacists face when caring for adolescent patients.
Consent and Confidentiality
Adequate training on the topics of adolescent consent and confidentiality are invaluable to pharmacists with teenage patients, as it will better inform the decision to prescribe or recommend medications. Furthermore, when treating teenage patients, it’s imperative that pharmacists are aware of ways in which the rules of confidentiality may vary among young patients and have a thorough understanding of HIPAA regulations as they pertain to adolescents in particular.
Patient Questions and Concerns
Pharmacists have an opportunity to educate adolescents on medical alternatives that can be pivotal to their health and wellness. However, when answering questions directly from teenage patients or from their parents, pharmacists must understand how to clearly communicate the risks and benefits of such options. And if a patient’s parent is potentially making it difficult for the teen to speak up or ask questions, pharmacists must know when to employ their authority and request privacy, if optional.
Prescriptions and Authority
While the degree of authority that pharmacists have with regards to prescribing medications is growing, it isn’t unlimited. Therefore, pharmacists must be aware of the prescribing restrictions they face on a state-by-state basis. Furthermore, when prescribing medications to adolescents, pharmacists must be especially aware of the necessary dosage adjustments. Considering a medication’s recommended dosage for age, weight, and other factors, pharmacists must employ their best judgement and clinical expertise when amending prescriptions for teenage patients.
Overcome Healthcare Challenges With HealthCare Support
To best prepare for the challenges that face pharmacists, partner with a healthcare recruiter at HealthCare Support. Once you join our talent network, you’ll not only have access to tools designed to help you through the job search and application process, but also ongoing contact with our recruiters. This way, you’ll always be able to get in touch with a professional who can answer your questions or guide you to the best resource for assistance. If you’re interested in joining our talent network, call us today at 407-478-0332.
Plenty of people have misconceptions about what goes on in the world of pharmacy. But if you’re thinking about pursuing a career in the field, even a few wrong ideas can make you second-guess your next move. To help recent grads get started on their careers, let’s get the facts straight about what it actually looks like to work in pharmacy.
Myth #1: Pharmacists need bachelor’s degrees
A career in pharmacy undoubtedly requires years of higher education; however, a bachelor’s degree isn’t a necessary prerequisite for pharmacy school. Of course, more education will look better on a pharmacy school application, but many students enroll in a pharmacy program with just two to three years of undergraduate education.
Myth #2: Pharmacists can’t specialize
Because pharmacists earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) rather than a Doctor of Medicine (MD), many people assume that they’re already in a specialized field. However, pharmacists can specialize their field of practice from a choice of multiple areas, such as:
Myth #3: Pharmacists never interact with patients
Pharmacists aren’t entirely the behind-the-scenes professionals that many believe them to be. In fact, if patients have a question about their prescription or just need a recommendation for an over-the-counter solution, they often go to pharmacists rather than make an appointment with their general practitioner.
Myth #4: Pharmacists only count pills
Certainly, pharmacists are responsible for distributing medications and ensuring accurate dosages. However, there are a lot of other tasks that can pop up in their day to day, including:
- Assisting in product research and clinical trials
- Filling prescriptions and dispensing drugs
- Training incoming pharmacists
- Informing patients on the side effects and proper usage of their prescriptions
- Fulfilling insurance documents
- Verifying script and cross-referencing patient records for drug interactions
- Advising physicians with patient prescription dosage and type
Myth #5: “Pharmacist” is the only job title you’ll see
You will also see titles such as;
- Staff Pharmacist
- Clinical Pharmacist (Compounding)
- Home Infusion Pharmacist
- Mail Order Pharmacist
- Prior Authorization Pharmacist
Myth #6: All Pharmacists work in grocery stores
While most are aware of the in-house pharmacists at their local grocer, some are unaware of the variety of other work settings such as;
- Mail Order Pharmacies / Pharmacy Benefit Management Companies (warehouse/call center settings)
- Long Term Care
- Specialty Pharmacies
- Retail stores (including independent pharmacies, supermarket chains, mass merchandisers)
- Closed door pharmacies
Start Your Pharmacy Career Here
If you’re eager to get your foot in the door of pharmacy, talk with the healthcare recruiters at HealthCare Support. Our talented team is dedicated to placing professionals in the right position based on skills, experience, and preference. Through resume building, interview prep, and inside recruiter knowledge, we can help you find your fit in pharmacy and equip you with the tools to succeed. To learn more about our talent network and take the next steps in your career, call us today at 407-478-0332.