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Forget To Take Medications?

By jeremy

Medication Compliance Packaging at Tache Pharmacy

Do you, or someone you provide care for, forget to take medications?  Or do medications get taken at the wrong time?

If your answer is yes you forget to take medications correctly then Tache Pharmacy can help.

Pill Organizers

The picture above shows pill organizers available for sale at Tache Pharmacy.  With these pill planners you have to organize the medications yourself.

Keep reading to find out more about how we can organize your pills into compliance package for you…

And please note that we have free city-wide prescription delivery so it doesn’t matter if you live somewhere across the city…we can still help.

Many People Forget to Take Medications

You are not alone, many people forget to take their medications or do not take their medicines properly.

When medicine is not taken properly as prescribed this is known as medication non-compliance or medication non-adherence.

This is a very common problem.  In fact, in the article “Medication Non-adherence: Exploring the Tension Between Patient Safety and Patient Autonomy” by Bobby Gheorghiu and Seema Nayani reported the following:

“According to a World Health Organization report, medication non-adherence accounts for five per cent of Canadian hospital admissions and five per cent of physician visits, resulting in an additional $4 billion in health care costs annually.

In another article “Medication Adherence: The Elephant in the Room” by Jennifer Kim it is stated that:

“According to the World Health Organization, medication adherence can have a more direct impact on patient outcomes than the specific treatment itself.  Medication adherence can affect quality and length of life, health outcomes, and overall healthcare costs.  Nonadherence can account for up to 50% of treatment failures, around 125,000 deaths, and up to 25% of hospitalizations each year in the United States.

Typically, adherence rates of 80% or more are needed for optimal therapeutic efficacy. However, it is estimated that adherence to chronic medications is around 50%.  Adherence rates can go down as time passes after the initial prescription is written, or as barriers emerge or multiply.”

So what can you do if you forget to take medications?

How To NOT Forget To Take Medications

One of the easiest and most convenient ways to remember to take your medications as prescribed is to have your pharmacy put your medication into compliance packaging.

Rather than having your medications in medication bottles or vials the pharmacy puts the medicine into special packaging making it easier to remember.

Compliance packaging is simply a type of packaging that allows your medication to be organized for you into appropriate dates and times.  The dates and times are labelled to make it easy to take the medications on time.

Many people struggle to remember if they have already taken their dose and if their medication is in a bottle they may repeat a dose that they have already taken.  This can be dangerous.  Compliance packaging makes it obvious that the dose has already been taken.

Types of Compliance Packaging Available at Tache Pharmacy

At Tache Pharmacy we offer two types of compliance packaging:

  1. Bubble Packs / Blister Packs
  2. Pacmed Strips

What are Bubble Packs?

Bubble packs (also known as blister packs) are a type of compliance packaging in which medications are placed into plastic bubbles which are designated as specific times and days.  These bubbles are then sealed within a cardboard backing that allows the medications to be held in place.

The medications can then be “punched out” of their bubbles when it is time to take the dose.  This greatly helps individuals who forget to take medications.

Perhaps this picture will make it easier to understand…

Tache Pharmacy Bubble Pack

As you can see from the picture, along the top of the bubble pack card the bubbles are labelled Breakfast, Lunch, Supper and Bedtime.  Also, along the right hand side each day of the week is labelled beside the rows of bubbles.  If requested we can even label the specific date along the left hand side.

These bubble cards open like a book.  On the inside cover of the card we provide a label that shows pictures of the medications and exactly which bubbles they are in within the bubble pack.  This greatly helps anyone that is coming into the home to assist with administering medications.

Tache Pharmacy Bubble Pack Label

These blister packs are filled with our computerized Synmed packaging system and then thoroughly checked by our pharmacists.  The combination of the computerized filling system and a final pharmacist check helps to ensure great accuracy.

The following pictures show our Synmed Bubble Pack machine.

Tache Pharmacy Synmed Bubble Packaging Machine

Tache Pharmacy Synmed Machine Close up

What are Pacmed Strips?

Pacmed strips are plastic strips that enclose medications in pouches in sequential time and date.  In the end you have a strip of medication that is in a roll and as you unroll the strip it provides your next dose.

Unlike bubble packs, pacmed strips can be “fine tuned” to provide doses at any time you wish and pacmed strips can also provide more than four dosing times per day.  Pacmed strips do have the added  benefit of allowing you to remove specific doses or specific days and taking those doses with you wherever you go.  With bubble packs you must take the whole bubble pack with you.

That being said, some people prefer bubble packs and some people prefer pacmed strips.  We suggest that people can always try both to see which they like better.

This picture may make it easier to understand what a pacmed strip is.  In the picture two different strips are shown, one for regular medications and then one for prn medications which are taken only as needed.

Tache Pharmacy Pacmed Strips

You can see that each pacmed pouch is labelled with date and time as well as what medications are found in the pouch.

Like our bubble packs, pacmed strips are produced using a computerized system.  The difference is that pacmed strips are created with the Pacmed computerized packaging system.

Once created, all pacmed strips are then checked by our pharmacists to ensure accuracy.

The following picture shows our Pacmed Compliance Packaging machine.

Tache Pharmacy Pacmed Compliance Packaging Machine

For more information about our compliance packaging options please feel free to phone us at 204-233-3469 and speak to one our pharmacy assistants or a pharmacist.  Or visit our contact us page.

For further information about the benefits of compliance packaging visit the study, “Packaging interventions to increase medication adherence: systematic review and meta-analysis”