Published Online: Thursday, March 1, 2007

Patients will be peppering their pharmacists with questions about prescription medicines, if the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) has its way. The association is urging patients to approach community pharmacists to "ask questions, talk about their concerns, and provide any necessary health information."

Specifically, APhA officials said that patients should ask their pharmacist for the name of the medication dispensed, what the drug is supposed to do, and how it should be taken. They should ask about the best time of day to use the medication, how to determine whether the drug is working, and what to do if they miss a dose.

Association officials also want patients to discuss side effects of drugs with their pharmacist. According to APhA, "It is very important to find out all serious side effects and have an emergency contact number."

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