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Pharmacists have been lauded as “the experts in medicines” after a study highlighted the importance of giving patients with diabetes appropriate medications to prevent cardiovascular conditions.
Diabetics are at increased risk of death or disease from complications such as heart disease and stroke, and diabetes patients over the age of 40 should be given antiplatelets to prevent the formation of blood clots and statins to reduce blood cholesterol levels (statins).
However, new research at a GP practice in north east England has revealed that one in four patients who should be given such treatment were not receiving the drugs.
The research was presented to the British Pharmaceutical Conference in Manchester by head researcher Wasim Baqir, who said: “This primary care project shows that despite their high cardiovascular risk, one in four patients with diabetes are not being treated with prophylactic aspirin and/or statins – medicines that could prevent their death from complications of their disease.”
“This study has already led to a change in the medication regimes for 22 patients – highlighting the importance of the role that pharmacists play in medicines management. They are the experts in medicines and make a significant contribution to patient safety.”
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