When most people think of technological advancements they think about cell phones, tablets, and other hand held devices. They sometimes think of GPS systems and other tracking devices. Technological advances, however, are also a part of other aspects of our lives.
The clinical labelling of medications and other prescription items have also advanced because of technology. Packaging services and pill marking systems help patients more carefully and accurately take their prescribed medicines. Without the proper packaging and clinical labelling, accidental over or under dosage is more likely.
Some of the most common medication errors include the following:
- Given the wrong medication. Unfortunately, some medication errors happen when a patient is given the wrong medication. Clinical labelling of individual tablets can help patients, nurses, and other care givers have a visual check of the medication they are either taking or administering.
- Wrong dosage. Numbered or dated packaging can help patients better monitor the medicine that they take. If, for instance, the pharmaceutical blister packaging includes the names of the days of the week it is easier to tell that you have already taken that day’s medication. For patients who take several pills every day, daily medical packaging design can come dated for the patients.
- Children getting a hold of medication.
The bottle packaging companies have been using childproof lids for many years. Now, with the addition of blister packaging even these can be made with child safe features so only adults can open the packaging.
- Taking over the counter medications that interact with prescription drugs.
Individual over the counter pills can be sealed in blister packs that contain drug interaction warnings. Every single pill can carry these warnings so that even if a pill is lose in the bottom of a drawer it can still be identified.
- Taking medication that is unsafe for your age. Again, pharmaceutical packaging companies can print age suggestions on every sealed blister pack. While it is still a good idea to keep original packaging, much of the needed information can be printed on individual doses.
While these measures will not keep people from making all medication mistakes, they are are a huge step in the right direction. For inaccurate doses that are accidental, these pharmaceutical packaging solutions provide many reminders, both visual and written, to help patients be careful about the medicine that they take.
Customized Prescriptions Help Care Givers and Patients Monitor Medication
Large pharmacies with on site blister packaging machines can create daily dose blister packs for patients when they fill their prescriptions. In addition to the clinical labelling that is legally required, these blister packs can be customized by color as well. By tinting the foil packs, for example, a two person household can tell at a glance the difference between medications. In its simplest use, for instance, the husbands daily dose blister packs can be tinted blue and the wife’s can be tinted pink. these visual clues make identification easy and fast.
And while many medications come in pill form, others come as liquids. Liquid products can be packaged normally in a single bottle or they often come packaged in products called pouches or sachets. These individual doses provide easy opening and disposal for the consumer. Other pouch packaging options for liquid products include childsafe seals, strip seals, and easy to open rip and tear pouches.
Although patients are not always used to thinking of themselves as consumers, it is a good approach to take. When, for instance, a patient is ordering up a prescription, they should get in the habit of asking for the packaging option that they want. Every pharmacist wants the patients they service to get the correct dosage throughout the length of the prescription. If color coded or blister packed pills help ensure accuracy, a pharmacist will do everything within his or her power to distribute the medication to the customer’s preferences.
Technological advancements have a positive effect on every part of our lives. While we often think of communication devices when we think of technology, that is not the only kind of technological advancement. The pharmaceutical industry not only continues to develop new medicines, it also works to improve packaging for accuracy and safety.