Pharmacy Assistant

3 Facts About Drug Labelling for Students Taking Pharmacy Assistant Courses

April 24, 2017

bottles of medicine

Prescription and non-prescription medication allow people with many medical conditions, both threatening and non-threatening, to control and alleviate their illnesses. However, this depends upon the correct medication being taken in the proper dosages at the correct times.

To make facts about drugs as easy to understand as possible, strict controls exist regarding how drug labels should present information. Learning how drug labels are supposed to look and why they are supposed to look the way they do, is an important element of training to become a pharmacy assistant.

Here’s a peek at some pertinent facts about drug labeling.

1. After Completing the Pharmacy Assistant Course, You’ll Learn Basic Information on Most Prescription Labels

To help healthcare professionals and patients, there is some important information that you can almost always expect to see on prescription labels when working in Canadian pharmacies. This includes important information like the drug’s name, its official identification number, instructions for how to take it, the number of capsules included in the bottle, and more. This helps to provide patients with useful information to guide them in taking their medication.

Under the supervision of a pharmacist, pharmacy assistants may help with filing prescriptions. To prepare you to complete this task with confidence, in-depth career training in healthcare is essential. It is important to choose a training program that will give you a great understanding of prescriptions and how to properly fill them. Choosing an education at Medix College will allow you to master all of this and more, granting you the skills employers need in pharmacy assistants.

2. For Drugs Sold in Canada, Regulations Exist to Maintain Legibility

Despite best efforts to provide patients with adequate information regarding drugs, many people have difficulty understanding the information they see on drug labels. To help prevent confusion, regulations are being implemented to improve the manner in which information is presented on a drug’s label.

Health Canada’s guidelines for drug labels come into effect in 2019, and include modifications like ensuring important information is prominent, readily discernible, written understandably, and not obscured by graphics or other text. These design standards will hopefully provide an important basis for consumer protection, helping to prevent unnecessary confusion for patients.

A woman in the pharmacy looking at her medication
New labelling guidelines could cut down on patient confusion

Because these measures won’t come into effect until a while after your pharmacy assistant course, you’ll be able to get a great look at how effective they prove to be in the coming years. If you notice fewer confused patients going through your workplace, you may have the new guidelines to thank.

3. Graduates of Pharmacy Assistant Courses May Encounter Voluntary Labelling Standards

Outside the standards required by the government, many drug manufacturers also observe additional standards meant to improve clarity and ensure that customers are not accidentally misled by drug labelling. For example, some manufacturers may refer to the Institute for Safe Medication Practices’ List of Confused Drug Names to ensure their labelling cannot be misconstrued as offering something the drug does not do. By taking on this extra responsibility voluntarily, manufacturers can promote greater understanding and patient safety.

Initiatives like this show that professionals working on healthcare matters are deeply concerned with helping people. If you want the chance to help others in your own career, bringing your own skills to the healthcare space is an excellent way to make a difference in your community.

Do you want to earn your Pharmacy Assistant Diploma in Ontario?

Contact Medix College to learn more about enrolling!

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