(RxWiki News) As we face the uncertainties of the COVID-19 pandemic, safety needs to be a top priority — even when you head to the pharmacy to pick up your prescriptions.
Here are five tips to keep yourself and pharmacy staff protected from infection:
1. Get your prescriptions delivered. Many local pharmacies offer delivery. You can get your medications delivered straight to your home, mailbox or a safe place at your delivery address. Plus, many pharmacies are offering other delivery methods, such as mailing prescriptions.
2. Take advantage of the drive-thru. Your pharmacy may have a drive-thru window. This is the best way to minimize contact with other customers. Drive-thru windows also help protect the pharmacy staff. Make sure to request your refill before you head to the pharmacy to pick it up.
3. Pay ahead. Some pharmacies may be offering prepay options. This allows you to pay over the phone beforehand so that when you do come in or use the drive-thru, you minimize points of contact. Your pharmacy may ask you to securely send a picture of your insurance cards and benefit cards for processing.
4. Pick up all of your prescriptions at the same time. Many pharmacies offer what is called "medication synchronization." This is the syncing of your medications so that you can pick up all your medications at once. This will not only save you time, but it can minimize your number of trips to the pharmacy.
5. Utilize your pharmacy's technology. Many pharmacies offer text messaging and have automated phone systems. These systems allow you to get alerts and check the status of your medication refills. This way, you can make sure your medication is ready for pickup before you head to the pharmacy. Avoiding waiting in the pharmacy helps to minimize your contact with other customers.
If you take medications for chronic conditions like high blood pressure, asthma and diabetes, make sure you have enough medications at home. If your insurance allows it, try to have an extra supply of medication — especially if you are trying to stay home for long periods of time. Staying home is critically important for those who are at a higher risk for complications associated with coronavirus.