Don’t Self Medicate Against COVID-19- Zim Pharmacists Warn

PATIENTS managing COVID-19 from home should stay in contact with medical practitioners and health workers regarding treatment options to avoid drug overdose or poisoning from excessive intake of medicines and concoctions, the Retail Pharmacists Association (RPA) has warned.

By Michael Gwarisa

According to the organization, people must not self-medicate at home without getting medical advice from a doctor when feeling unwell as this would result in complicated health conditions.

As your pharmacists, we are highly advising that people should not take these prescription medicines without a valid prescription from the doctor. Further, people must not self-medicate at home. Kindly visit your doctor or call your doctor when feeling unwell. Visit your pharmacist if you require the supplements listed above.

“Do not take any medicines for the management or treatment of COVID-19 without discussing with your doctor or pharmacist,” said said Mr  Luckmore Bunu, secretary for Retail Pharmacists Association.

He added there is currently NO PROVEN CURE for COVID-19 even though a number of studies are being carried out to try and find a cure.

“Be that as it may, there are some supplements that may be used that help to boost one’s immunity ( mapiritsi anosimbisa masoja emumuviri ) . Some of the recommended supplements are:  1. Vitamin C,     2. Vitamin D,     3. Vitamin B Complex, and      4.  Zinc tablet; and they should be taken at recommended doses. ( please do not exceed recommended doses).

“Paracetamol is to be taken when one has pain or fever, ( kupisa muviri ) or both and should not be taken for more than 10 days without consulting your doctor or pharmacist].”

He also said there are some medicines which are being discussed on social media in relation to Covid-19 treatment which are only available on a doctor’s prescription and some of those medicines can cause serious side effects when they are used incorrectly.

“We should remember that Covid-19 infection is a serious disease, and the use of inappropriate medication can make the patient worse or result in unwarranted loss of life. These medicines which are being discussed in social media are actually being used under medical supervision, as they are being tested and monitored for effectiveness in the treatment of Covid19 disease (i.e. in clinical trials),” said Mr Bunu.

The Retail Pharmacists Association (RPA) is a professional association whose members are community pharmacists. Pharmacists are the custodians and specialists of medicines. One of their roles is to educate the public on the correct and safe use of medicines and medicinal products.

“Finally, to reduce chances of catching or transmitting covid-19 infection, we highly recommend people to keep warm (in this winter), always wear face masks correctly, practise good hand hygiene, practise physical (social) distancing, avoid unnecessary movement, eat lots of vegetables & fruits, drink adequate fluids, and seek medical care when unwell.

“Patients who are on chronic medications, such as people with diabetes, hypertension (BP), asthma, and any condition where they must take their medicines every day, they should always take their medicines as advised by their doctors or pharmacists.”

 

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