NHS Direct Launches Medicines Health Zone

Posted on: 25 April 2008 by Gareth Hargreaves

NHS Direct has launched an in-depth guide to medicines, prescriptions, immunisation, contraception and more.

The guide gives users information on how to take medicines during specific times in life such as during breastfeeding, pregnancy and childhood and advice about vaccinations, the contraceptive pill and travel advice.

It also covers those recurring questions we have all asked at some time or other: what happens if I miss taking a dose and or take two; what are the side effects; how will alcohol, food or other medicines interact with my medicines?

There are in-depth guides to common medicines and treatments (Medicines A to Z) including painkillers, cancer treatments, laxatives and antibiotics. Advice is given on how to take your medicines, including stopping medicines, using creams and ointments, and what to do before surgery. 

There is alsp a guide to medicines law and regulation - including advice about buying over-the-counter and controlled medicines.

The NHS introduced this new zone because of the increasing number of enquiries they are receiving.  Each week over 2,000 online requests for specific information about medicines are handled by trained specialists, and daily, NHS Direct handles handles over 22,000 calls, which is over 8 million a year.

The medicine health zone is intended to draw together in one place information that will support patients managing their own medicines and linking them through to information about their condition.

To find out more, visit the new guide at http://www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk/Zones/Zone.aspx?zoneId=42

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