Pharmacists Key for OTC Pain

The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) has highlighted the “crucial role” that pharmacists play in responsibility for over-thecounter pain management.

A FIP statement issued yesterday noted that the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide had led to more people managing their own health and seeking information in order to do so, with the accessibility of pharmacists meaning they are the “first (and often preferred) source of reliable, evidence-based advice and care”.

Key pharmacist roles cited by FIP included making sure analgesics are only supplied if a need is established; ensuring the most appropriate product is selected; and counselling on effective and safe downing and administration.

Pharmacists also contribute to safety by checking for and preventing drug interactions, advising on safe storage of analgesics, recognising conditions that need referral to other health professionals, and recording supply of analgesics in some countries where national patient record systems are in place.

The FIP update also noted the importance of pharmacist involvement in transitions of care, when patients are particularly at risk of medication errors.

“As patient-care advocates, community pharmacists play an important role in facilitating seamless care,” FIP noted.

“These actions, routinely performed every day by community pharmacists, ensure access to effective medication, optimise quality of life and health outcomes for people with pain, improve safety for patents and others, and support the sustainability of our healthcare systems.”

Source:, Tuesday 7 July 2021