Practicing a safe medication routine means taking your medications exactly as they are prescribed — the right dose, at the right time, in the right way. Taking medicines incorrectly could cause them to be ineffective or even dangerous.
Establishing a safe medication routine, including proper storage, will help you build habits that protect you and keep you healthy as you take your prescribed medications.
Here are some helpful hints to help you create a safe medication routine:
Read your medication label. You can also find warnings on the label to help you protect yourself as you make your medication a part of your daily routine.
Check the ingredients. Your doctor or pharmacist can provide you with a list of your medication’s ingredients. Review it for anything you may be allergic to, and make sure your doctor and pharmacist know of any drug allergies you have.
Know the expiration date. It is important to understand how long you should continue taking a medication. Never take a medication that has expired.
Know what to avoid. Certain medications are known to have potentially dangerous reactions with other substances. It is important to know which foods, beverages, other drugs, supplements, or over-the-counter medicines to avoid while taking your medication.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist. Even with a medication you’ve taken for years, it is important to discuss it with your doctor and pharmacist regularly, including how the medication affects your health condition and daily life.
Never share medicines. Never accept prescription medications from someone else, and never share the medications you’ve been prescribed. Prescribed medications can be dangerous if your use hasn’t been evaluated by a professional.
Organize your medicine. Storing medications as directed is important in making sure your medication remains effective through its expiration date. Your safe medication routine will also keep your medicine away from anyone who could mistakenly ingest it.
Never take medicine in the dark. When taking or administering any medication, it’s critical to view the label to make sure you’ve reached for the right medicine bottle and know the exact recommended dose.
As the state’s public health agency, DHEC strives to be the example when it comes to healthy lifestyles—both for the public and other organizations.
In May, we participated in the Working Well Corporate Challenge, a partnership between the Governor’s Cup Road Race and the South Carolina Hospital Association. Over 100 DHEC employees and their families participated in the marathon, half-marathon, 5K, Main Street Mile and Kid’s Mile.
Last week, the South Carolina Hospital Association (SCHA) recognized DHEC for our winning participation in the challenge.
In 2017, the Governor’s Cup Road Race partnered with South Carolina Hospital Association’s Working Well initiative to form the Working Well Corporate Challenge. We congratulate the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) who recruited and registered 104 participants.
DHEC promoted participation by creating an intra-office competition, with the winning team receiving a trophy and recognition at an ice cream social. DHEC promoted the event to walkers and runners alike by basing the competition on the total number of participants who finished a race, rather than distance or speed. This leveled the playing field between seasoned runners, new walkers, and everyone in between.
Will Britt, DHEC team captain, has seen an increase in physical activity interest since the Working Well Corporate Challenge. “The challenge went better than we expected,” said Britt. “We now have many employees who have already signed up for another race and are enthusiastic about toeing the line at the 2018 Governor’s Cup.”
Impacting nearly 35,000 state employees, the new A Healthier State initiative is promoting improved health by providing comprehensive baseline worksite assessments, model policies, and wellness consultation services. Starting in May, DHEC proudly kicked off a component of the worksite wellness initiative by joining the 2015 National Bike Challenge.
A nationwide event uniting thousands of current bicyclists—and encouraging countless new riders, the challenge aims to unite 100,000 riders to pedal 35 million miles from May 1, 2015 until September 30, 2015.
Now that we’re well into the challenge, we wanted to provide everyone with a quick update. Helping to promote a healthy lifestyle and air quality, Team DHEC has collectively ridden over 3,000 miles, enough to make it from the east coast to the west coast, and burned over 159,000 calories. Keep up the good work team!
Interested in joining TEAM DHEC? There’s still time. To participate in this year’s challenge, please contact Leslie Coolidge at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of our A Healthier State Initiative, DHEC is offering FREE health screenings to employees through Prevention Partners. This is open to all DHEC employees, retirees, spouses and dependents who have the State Health Standard Plan, State Health Savings Plan, or Blue Choice HMO as their primary insurance. The cost is $55 for those who are covered under Medicare or Tricare.
Confidential health risk appraisal with family history, lifestyle information, medical history, BMI, blood pressure and weight
Comprehensive lab tests
Free prostate screening for men over 40
Additional testing for Hgb A1C, Vitamin D, Testosterone, and the Hepatitis C antibody is available for an extra fee.
March is National Nutrition Month and here at DHEC, we are celebrating healthy eating with food demonstrations and fresh local produce. In Central Office, members of our WIC and SNAP teams recently provided three separate 30-minute engaging food demonstrations using fresh produce from our new mobile Farmers Market service, provided by Jumper Farm.
In addition, the Pee Dee Region recently hosted a Lunch and Learn at the Florence Health Department, with 31 people in attendance. Two registered dietitian staff from the region provided recipes for multiple meals, and also discussed ways to reduce sodium, fat and calories with just a few small changes.
Eating healthy not only feeds your body, it feeds your mind. To find healthy options near you, check out letsgosc.org.
Mobile Farmers Market Schedule for Central Office:
Begins at 1:30 p.m. on Mondays
Begins at 2:30 p.m. on Mondays
Columbia Mills Building
Begins at 1:30 p.m. on Fridays