Here’s an answer to remembering when to take your medications

taking medication as prescribed, called nonadher- ence, can have major consequences, particularly if the person is elderly or vulnerable. Each year, drug nonadherence is the cause of 25 per cent of hospital admissions for the elderly and 23 percent of all nurs- ing home admissions. Among patients, forgetting is the most frequently


reported reason for nonadherence. While there are several options, such as bubble packs that are pre- pared by your local pharmacy, to help people remem- ber to take their medications, what do you do when a loved one can no longer manage using bubble packs? What do you do when they start the medications in a blister pack out of order and take their bedtime medications in the morning? What if they take an overdose because they woke up from an afternoon nap thinking it was morning and took their morning pills again? That’s where the Pivotell Advance Automatic Pill Dispenser comes in. The Pivotell Advance Automatic Pill Dispenser is a device that reminds the user by means of an alarm and flashing light when to take their medication. The key benefit of the automatic poll dispenser is that it makes the correct dose, and

or those on a complex pill regime, taking pre- scribed medication at the right dose and at the right time can be confusing and difficult. Not

only the correct dose, available at the correct time. All other pills are safely locked in the dispenser out of sight, helping to prevent an incorrect dose or an overdose being taken. Studies have shown that the use of the dispensers

results in better self-management of medication, en- abling a person:

• to enjoy an improved quality of life • to remain independent at home for longer and • to be less reliant on family members, health and social care services If your loved one: • has a problem managing their medication, • is on a stable medication regime, • wants to take their medication correctly, but has some confusion, • has difficulty remembering the time and date, • has difficulty making a rational choice about which compartment to open in a medication blister pack or dossette box, then he or she may benefit from a Pivotell Advance Automatic Pill Dispenser. This pill dispenser is available exclusively at Pharma- save Assiniboine Pharmacy and retails for $499.99. If you have your medications filled at Pharmasave Assiniboine Pharmacy, the automatic pill dispenser, with a small deposit, is provided for free. Transfer- ring your prescriptions is as simple as a phone call to your current pharmacy. Please contact a pharmacy team member for more details on how you or a loved one may benefit from the Pivotell Advance Automat- ic Pill Dispenser. To find out more, call 204-615-1144 or visit Assiniboine Pharmacy at Unit D - 3111 Portage Ave.

Province urges seniors to take high-dose flu vaccine Bill Burfoot

making its presence felt on a more regular basis this past month. Though the seasons may not have changed, there is one season that sometimes gets overlooked this time of year; flu season. The government is stressing that it is important for seniors to get the high-dose influenza vaccine, which is being made available for a second consec- utive year at no charge to seniors at long-term care facilities, to interim residents, for those in transi- tional care beds, and clients of respite care who of- ten are at a higher risk of suffering from complica- tions due to the flu.


In 2017, Manitoba became the first province to offer the high-dose vaccine, and the results were promising. Since then, five other provinces have followed suit. When comparing the 2017-18 in- fluenza season to the 2014-15 influenza season, which had a similar flu strain, timing of season and severity, there were: • fewer outbreaks of influenza A in long-term

care facilities, • fewer confirmed cases of influenza among long-term care facility residents aged 65 and over, • a statistically significant decrease in the risk of

getting influenza A, and • fewer all-cause deaths in immunized residents aged 65 and over. “The goal in offering this particular vaccine is to further mitigate the health risks that come for Manitobans living in these care facilities when flu outbreaks occur, which in turn reduces the strain on emergency departments and urgent care cen- tres,” says Health, Seniors and Active Living Min- ister Cameron Friesen. “I encourage all Manitobans who are eligible to receive this vaccine to get it.”

eet are a wonderful and beauti- fully useful part of your anato- my. They take you around and balance you and look superb. This is probably the reason that there are so many nail clinics to make feet look nicer. For many of us, the task of cutting our own nails becomes more dif- ficult as we age. There are many places to seek assistance with this: family members, nail clinics, foot care nurses and podiatrists. If you are having problems with nails that have be- come painful or difficult to manage, please see a health care professional, either a po- diatrist or foot care nurse. If you have any ongoing health problems such as diabetes, or reduced circulation, then


What to do about toenail problems F

the health care option is the safest. What should you expect from a po- diatrist for help with nail cutting? Podiatrists are health

Dr. Gillian Aldous Foot Notes

care professionals. The College of Podiatrists of Manitoba is the gov- erning body that regu- lates the Podiatry Act of Manitoba. The Act set outs the responsibilities and practices that podia- trists adhere to so that members of the public, our patients, are treated properly. As podiatrists, we

clean with

should clinic

provide sterilised a

experience, equip-

ment. We will ask spe- cific questions regarding

your health and lifestyle, past medical history, present medication. We do this to provide you with the required ser- vice you should have. Our intention is

• Thickened nails

• Dryness of nails/skin around nail • Fungal nails • The unexplained reality that our arms seem to have shrunk, our legs seem to have got longer, and we just can’t seem to see our feet properly when we try to cut our toenails by ourselves. These are nail issues which can be dealt with by podiatrists. Fungal nails* About six to 10 per cent of the pop- ulation have fungal nails and this issue becomes more predominant as we get older. There is good news! This is not a life threatening condition. I know that the nails don’t look nice and they can smell. However, it is unlikely that the condition spreads to other nails

hile it may not technically be winter yet, Mother Nature has said otherwise here in Manitoba with the colder weather

According to Canada’s FluWatch report from the Public Health Agency of Canada, this season has seen 2,063 laboratory-confirmed influenza detec- tions up to November 18, 2018, with the most common circulating in Canada being influenza A(H1N1).

So far this season, the number of influenza out-

breaks has remained within expected levels. How- ever, the settings in which outbreaks have been reported this season suggests that younger age- groups are being affected more than in previous seasons. To date this season, more than 300 influenza- associated hospitalizations have been reported by participating provinces and territories, with the highest estimated rates belonging to children under 5 years of age, and adults 65 years of age and older. The province is reminding residents that the sea-

sonal influenza immunization campaign is still in full swing, offering the basic flu vaccine to all Man- itobans aged six months and older free of charge. Seniors can also receive free of charge the Pneu-

P-23 vaccine, which helps protect against pneumo- nia and are available at local public health offices, nursing stations, doctors’ offices and Access cen- tres. People seeking the vaccine should contact pro- viders first to ensure they are available. Pharmacists can also provide immunizations to people seven years of age and older.

to improve your foot problems and al- leviate pain. Some of the most common nail

problems we experience as we get old- er are:

or individuals. Unfortunately, the bad news is that it is very difficult to return the nail to its previous healthy self. In my clinic, my treatment is to re- duce the thickness of the nail. I do this because thickened nails can push on the flesh beneath the nail and cause a wound. For anyone with health is- sues where wounds don’t heal quickly, then a wound beneath the nail can become a real concern. A tight winter boot pushing on to the nail can make it painful. This can be a serious issue. If you have concerns, please seek medical advice. We are here to help. *Please note: As a podiatrist I have learned about fungal nails and have experience in treating them. There is a lot of research, opinions and money invested to improve this condition. The information that I have presented here is my opinion. Dr. Aldous has a BSc (Honours) in Po-

diatry, United Kingdom. She is a member of the College of Podiatrists of Manitoba.

December 2018

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