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Prescription medication: Don’t be a pill, know the drill

Medication prescribed from a medical physician is different from over-the-counter medication and should only be used by the patient it is prescribed to.

Medication prescribed from a medical physician is different from over-the-counter medication and should only be used by the patient it is prescribed to. The Altus Air Force Base pharmacy advises proper use and storage of all medication. (U.S. Air Force photo Senior Airman Cody Dowell)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. -- Medication prescribed by a doctor is intended for the betterment and wellbeing of the patient. One of the key factors to ensure this is accomplished it that the patient is well-educated on how they are supposed to handle and take their medication.

Prescribed medication is different from over-the-counter medication and should only be taken by the patient it is prescribed to.

Other important directions include, to:

-Contact the pharmacy at least one week prior to running out of medication for refills

-Store medication in proper secure and temperature appropriate areas

-Take exactly as instructed

- Contact your pharmacy as soon as possible if any unique circumstances arise and you need more medication

-Dispose of excess medication in a medication disposal area, available at the medical group

Also, don’t forget to refrain from:

-Sharing medications with anyone else, even if they take the same medication or have the same symptoms

-Keeping or taking medication past its prescribed date

-Using medication for reasons other than its prescribed use

-Using CBD oil, Codeine, Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, lorazepam and any federally illegal substances

The 97th Medical Group Pharmacy is open Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Active duty, dependent, retirees with medical benefits, guard and reserve members on active orders can get medication from the base pharmacy.

All you need is your military ID to pick up prescriptions for yourself on base. When picking up prescriptions for other patients over the age of 18, make sure you have written permission from them, know their date of birth, general idea of what you are picking up and optionally have their ID available to speed up the process. For patients under the age of 18, you need their name and date of birth.

By implementing a new global script locator, the 97th Medical Group pharmacy has reduced patient wait-time and improved medication delivery accuracy The new locator system is part of an electronic storage system, can store medication and allows scan-enabled barcodes to easily track where the medication is being held for the specific patient. This cuts down on mistakes and wait- times, getting patients their correct medication faster, thus streamlining the process.

If in doubt about any prescribed medication, call the base pharmacy directly at (580)481-5258 or for refills call the automated refill line at (580)481-5257.