board certified geriatric pharmacist

Why would you benefit from a board certified geriatric pharmacist?

board certified geriatric pharmacist
How Meds MASH promoted safe, healthy, active living

I started a company that I call Meds MASH in 2015. I am a board certified geriatric pharmacist. That means I specialize in medication use in people over the age of 60.

What Meds MASH doesn’t do for you:

  • Fill your prescription
    • Your local pharmacist will do this
  • Change any of your prescription medications
    • I will make suggestions to your doctors or help you discuss them with your doctor
  • Take over your healthcare
    • You will keep your doctors who will lead your healthcare

What Meds MASH will do for you:

  • Talk with you to find out what are your health and life goals
  • Review all of your medications
    • Prescribed
    • Over-the-counter
    • Vitamins
    • Supplements
    • Herbal remedies
    • Any other substances
  • Obtain your medication history
  • Review your labs to check for medication safety
    • Kidney function
    • Liver function
    • Medical condition control
    • Side effects
  • Review your medicines compared with your allergies
  • Evaluate in-depth for risks of falling
  • Review for some common issues that are often missed
  • Make sure you understand each of your medications and how to best take them
  • Take time and answer your questions
  • Provide you with detailed information you can review later and share with your doctor
  • Talk direct with your doctors at your request and authorization
  • Engage your family at your request and authorization

Does Meds MASH make a difference? On average in an initial review- 

  • We make 4.5 interventions
  • A recommendation is made to improve two medications
  • A recommendation is made to change a medication for 82% of clients
  • Over 98% of the time a significant suggestion about medication is made!

Questions frequently asked

Doesn’t my doctor already do this?

  • Rarely does your doctor know absolutely every medication you take and how you actually take it.
    • Meds MASH specializes in obtaining this before reviewing the medications.
  • Only a small percentage of people over 60 have a doctor board certified in geriatrics.
    • Meds MASH provides a board certified geriatric expert.
  • Most people have 7-15 minutes with their doctor.
    • Most Meds MASH initial visits are 45 minutes.
  • Rarely are people fully prepared for their doctor visit.
    • Part of a Meds MASH review includes specific strategies to get the most out of each medical visit with your doctors.

Doesn’t my pharmacist already review all of my medications?

  • Rarely does your pharmacist know all of the medications you take.
    • They know the prescriptions only, even if you only use one pharmacy.
      • You absolutely should use only one pharmacy!
    • Your pharmacist has a limited time to carefully review your medicines.
    • There are not many geriatric board certified pharmacists in the country.

Contact us today for a free consultation! Meds MASH 410-472-5078 or e-mail michelle@medsmash.com or on the website www.medsmash.com/contact.

BIBLICAL APPLICATION

There is a lot of talk about and emphasis on being ‘transparent’ today in our society. It has taken me months to clearly, succinctly state what we do at Meds MASH. I am still honing the message so that it really makes sense to people. We need to be able to put things in someone’s own perspective to help them really understand.

If an alien from Mars came to visit and talked to you about places, customs, and politics on Mars, it is unlikely you would understand very much of it. You would have no perspective of how things look or operate on that planet.

I had this same thought this week as I was reading the Psalms, especially the ones written by David. David was the king. He was responsible for all of the people. His perspectives were oriented around keeping people safe and alive.

He frequently talks about enemies and God’s protection in wars. I’m sure they were attacked, or at risk of being attacked, most of the time. God made it clear that when the people of Israel went into battle with God’s protection, then they would prevail.

Deuteronomy 28:7 ESV

“The Lord will cause your enemies who rise against you to be defeated before you. They shall come out against you one way and flee before you seven ways.

When they went into battle on their own, the outcomes were not so good.

Numbers 14:39-45 ESV

Israel Defeated in Battle

When Moses told these words to all the people of Israel, the people mourned greatly.  And they rose early in the morning and went up to the heights of the hill country, saying, “Here we are. We will go up to the place that the Lord has promised, for we have sinned.”  But Moses said, “Why now are you transgressing the command of the Lord, when that will not succeed?  Do not go up, for the Lord is not among you, lest you be struck down before your enemies.  For there the Amalekites and the Canaanites are facing you, and you shall fall by the sword. Because you have turned back from following the Lord, the Lord will not be with you.”  But they presumed to go up to the heights of the hill country, although neither the ark of the covenant of the Lord nor Moses departed out of the camp.  Then the Amalekites and the Canaanites who lived in that hill country came down and defeated them and pursued them, even to Hormah.

Our personal battles aren’t with swords, but they are still battles. And if God is for us and leading us, then our outcomes are infinitely better than when we do battle on our own without Him.

David also makes frequently reference to rain, crops, vineyards, and grain. We don’t tend to spend our days focused on those things. Our grocery stores and markets are filled with all we need.

But what are the daily struggles in your life that mean just as much to you as ability to grow crops meant in David’s time? Is it your finances, your job, career opportunities, relationships, finding your meaning in life? Our daily struggles are no less important that David’s. Our world and our perspectives are just different.

So, whatever your battles, lay them before the Lord. Honestly lay it all out there. Be completely transparent and clear in your requests before God. He already knows. He loves the trust you place in Him as you bring it all to Him.

Psalm 71:14-17 ESV

But I will hope continually

    and will praise you yet more and more.

My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,

    of your deeds of salvation all the day,

    for their number is past my knowledge.

With the mighty deeds of the Lord God I will come;

    I will remind them of your righteousness, yours alone.

O God, from my youth you have taught me,

    and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds.

If you’re ever at a loss for what to pray, consider the Psalms. They are the prayers and songs of praise of David. Put it in today’s perspective, and you’ll find they are completely relevant to your needs today.

Blessings,

Michelle

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Approach Your Doctor Visit Differently in 2016 – Win-Win

Slide1
Prepare for your doctor visit

 

How do you prepare for a doctor visit? Have you ever experienced, or can you picture, the following scenario?

You have a health-related issue and want to see your doctor. You call to make the appointment. You wait and monitor the issue until the day of the appointment. You think about the appointment as you get ready and drive to the office. You think about the visit while in the waiting room. You briefly tell the assistant about the issue while you are being checked in with your weight, blood pressure, etc. You think more about the issue while waiting for your provider to enter the room. Then, your provider comes in and your mind goes blank.

Has this ever happened to you? Even if you remembered most of what you wanted to discuss, did you leave and realize you forgot to mention something important?

Doctor Visit Preparation

This happens all too often! Sometimes people feel rushed. Sometimes they get caught up in conversation with their doctor and don’t realize the time available for the appointment has slipped way. I have had patients bring up important information at the very end of appointments many times. It is so late that we can’t fully address the issue with the time remaining.

So, what can you do to avoid this situation?

Important steps

Here are some important steps to help you get the most from your healthcare visits.

  1. From the time the issue arises until your appointment, write down important details your doctor will want to know.
    1. When did it start?
    2. How did it start?
    3. What makes it worse?
    4. What makes it better?
    5. Use good descriptive words to describe your symptoms.
    6. How often does it occur?
    7. Have you had something like this happen before?
    8. What has changed that might be related to this issue?
    9. Keep a journal of how the issue impacts you daily.
    10. What outcome are you hoping to have from your visit?
  2. Prioritize the issues you want to discuss at the appointment.
  3. Limit your list to the top 3. You can bring others to mention if there is time, but most visits have time for only 1 major or up to 3 more minor issues.
  4. Bring two copies of your list to your appointment.
  5. Give the list to the assistant who checks you in. He/she can then give it to your provider to review before coming in to the room with you. This will save a lot of time in the first part of your appointment.
  6. When your provider comes in the room, you will each have a copy. This will take the pressure off of you to remember the details. It will also help guide your provider to quickly understand the issue(s) you want to talk about.
  7. You can now have a more relaxed conversation with your provider in the time that is available for your visit.

Your provider will truly appreciate this approach. Keep in mind, for some symptoms your provider only knows what you tell him/her. So, the more thorough you can be, the better your provider can make the correct diagnosis.

Consider your healthcare to be a partnership rather than a one-way interaction. You and your providers will feel better about your relationship.

For more information about preparing for doctor visits, contact us at www.medsmash.com.

BIBLICAL APPLICATION

Just as there are more successful ways to approach medical visits, there are some best practices for communicating with God.

Jeremiah 29:12-13 ESV

Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.

In all parts of the Bible there are tips, insights, and instructions for maintaining our awareness and dependence on our Lord and Savior to walk with us through any circumstance.

Mark 11:24 ESV

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

Philippians 4:6-7 ESV

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

James 5:16 ESV

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

John 15:7 ESV

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

1 John 5:14-15 ESV

And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.

God is there with you, loving you, holding you at all times. He never leaves to take a break. He never gets distracted.

If you are feeling alone and not aware of His presence, you have your ‘shields’ up. Take them down. Go to Him in prayer and take down those defenses that are making you feel separated. God will love being able to communicate with you again. You will love that flood of security, grace, and unconditional love.

Blessings,

Michelle

P.S. Have you noticed that all of our instruction in prayer puts praise first? Then, bring your requests, hurts, and desires to God.

Getting Better – It Takes More than a Prescription

ID-10093880Do you have a health issue? If so, you just need a prescription, and you’ll be all better, right?

Huey Lewis sang that he ‘wanted a new drug’. His proposed ‘new drug’ had no side effects and made him feel like he felt when falling in love.

Does that describe the prescriptions that you take?

Unfortunately it’s just not that easy.

All medications have side effects. Many medications have very specific instructions to use them in a way that leads to the best possible outcome.

But, we are all busy. Who has time for those pesky details? Does it REALLY matter if you take it with food or first thing in the morning when you brush your teeth? If you take two when you remember them vs one in the morning and one at night, that’s ok, right? Do you really have to breathe in some special way when you use an inhaler? You just squirt it in, right?

To get the most benefit from your medications – and – to minimize your side effects, these details are very important. Let’s explore some of the types of important details.

Timing – If your medication is to be taken more than one time per day that means it doesn’t last a full 24 hours. To keep the medication active in your body, you need to take it more than once. If you take it too close together, you will get more than a full dose while the two doses overlap. This can increase your side effects or even be dangerous because you have too much medication. If you miss a dose, you will have time with little or no medication in your system to treat your condition.

Food – Some medications will bind to medication in the stomach and not be absorbed. So, you will get no medication in your body if you take it with food. Other medications will make you sick to your stomach if you don’t take them with food. Food will decrease or prevent that side effect of feeling nauseous.

Finishing early – Some conditions require that the whole bottle/set of medications be taken. Often we think once we feel better we’ll just stop taking the medication. Sometimes we even keep the extra in case we need them another time. Some medications, like antibiotics, need to be taken until all are gone. You start feeling better when the bacteria is made weak, but it is not gone yet. If you stop the antibiotic when you feel better, the bacteria can get strong again. Often that same antibiotic won’t weaken the bacteria the next time, so you will need to be on an even stronger antibiotic.

Finishing too quickly – Other medications need to be gradually taken away rather than stopped all at once. Your body can’t take back over all at once if you have been taking these medications. Examples are beta blockers for high blood pressure and prednisone for inflammatory reactions. The gradual taper of these medications is essential to avoid severe side effects. (Note, this DOES NOT mean you are addicted.)

Technique – Inhalers, eye drops, ear drops, injections, patches, suppositories, and other medication forms can be difficult to use correctly. If you don’t use them just right, you won’t get the full benefit of the medication. This is a waste of money, and more importantly, won’t help you feel better. For some of these medications, correct use can even be the difference between getting better and calling 911.

So, I highly encourage you to pay attention to these details about your medications. If you see instructions you don’t understand or know their purpose, ask your pharmacist. Pharmacists are there to explain, demonstrate, and help you get the most from your medications.

For more information, contact us at www.medsmash.com

BIBLICAL APPLICATION

What are the quick fixes to Heaven? What is the way to assure entry then get on with the busy-ness of life?

First, God’s every desire for you to live eternally in Heaven is clear in the Bible. The basics of the path to God are below.

John 3:16 ESV

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 14:6 ESV

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Once you have had the amazing experience of finding God, and you have welcomed Him in to your life, what next?

Do you then work hard to earn God’s love? No, God loves you no matter what. His grace covers anything you do or do not do.

Do you then go on about your business now that this task is done?

Timing – Filling your life with God is an all-of-the-time, every day, all times of day opportunity. I don’t think any of us take advantage of this fully. Not a single one of us is perfect. But, God’s grace is always there for you!

Food – The Bible, the word of God, is your nourishment. This is not a one-time read that then goes on the shelf. Each time you read it, you will learn new things. God has so much to share with you!

Finishing early – It can be tempting to make this life-altering, life-filling decision to dedicate yourself to God. It can then be easy to move on to other things. God wants to be in close contact with you all of the time, good times and bad, busy times and leisure. I highly encourage you to experience this close daily walk with your God!

Jesus states there are two main rules for life for us.

Mark 12:30-31 ESV

And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’  The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

This prescription to walk with God is a daily, sometimes even minute-to-minute, dose that is always available. And the side effects are wonderful!

Blessings,

Michelle

Image courtesy of rakratchada torsap at FreeDigitalPhotos.net