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One of the most common problem reported was large stashes of medicines (some of which have expired) in the homes of the elderly. Hence, PSS has since embarked on a programme with the Kreta-Ayer Kim Seng Division to provide home medication review visits to the elderly and less privileged in this division. On 17 May 2014, 9 pharmacists along with 7 second-year NUS Pharmacy students visited 42 elders. 

See what our volunteers have to say!

"I enjoyed the experience of doing a home medication review with the Chin Swee residents. It was good to talk to them in their own home environment and see how they kept their meds and organised them for daily administration." Pharmacist Volunteer, Chen Hsueh Ni

"It was very rewarding to give back to the community, and in turn receive their appreciation for the help with their medication management." Pharmacist Volunteer, Gui Huey Sywu

"It was a humbling experience to interact with the lovely geriatric patients in their home environment. It gave me the opportunity to engage them in their medication therapy and advocate a healthy lifestyle." Pharmacist Volunteer, Ong Seok Peng

"It was a morning filled with cheerful chats with the GRC volunteers and residents. It wasn't just a medication clean out or review exercise but a day we make new friends, learn more about and support one another." Pharmacist Volunteer, Tee Joa Ling 

"During the Chin Swee brown bagging day, I met an old lady who had several bags of medications from different polyclinics and hospital visits. Most importantly, medication instructions differ significantly between visits and the poor lady has been taking her medications wrongly due to the confusion. While there are policies and procedures in place to resolve issues of polypharmacy and poor compliance, there remains some elderly who fall through the safety net. The Chin Swee project once again highlights the importance of regular medication review and strong social support for these elderly." Pharmacist Volunteer, Terence Ng

"The medication review has been a fruitful experience for me. Although we did not manage to do in-depth reviews and counselling (especially since we do not have their medication records), we hope that through regular events like these, we are able to eventually communicate to these elderly how to better manage their health conditions in terms of the medications used and the costs involved." Pharmacist Volunteer, Kwok Meijun

"Conducting patient interviews in the convenience and comfort of their homes allows the patients to feel at ease to discuss their drug therapies and any associated problems they face. This allows us pharmacists to better educate them and improve safety and quality of care. I am thankful to have had this opportunity to contribute to the community!" Pharmacist Volunteer, Ong Kheng Yong

"To be able to contribute and benefit the less privileged with my knowledge and service is truly meaningful. This exposure has given me the opportunity to identify the various healthcare gaps existing in the community. What surprises me is the strong community bond- when one of them is not at home, the neighbours seem to know their whereabouts. This project also involved the help of students which has allowed me to guide them into better understanding of medication usage and effective counselling. I will definitely continue to support such programmes whenever possible." Pharmacist Volunteer, Agnes Wong

What the students have to say:

"This was my first time doing a medication review with a pharmacist. I realise that helping patients understand their medications better, helps to ensure compliance" Student Volunteer, Jonathan Ng

 "The medication review and clean out is a good platform for students to understand issues faced by the elderly in the healthcare setting. Checking their medication and reinforcing the dosage / counselling them is an excellent initiative to bridge the gap to provide a more comprehensive healthcare service for the elderly" Student Volunteer, Daphne Yeo


 "The event gave me the opportunity to see how the underprivileged elderly manage their drug therapies, which can easily consist of more than 10 different medications. It was an eye-opener for a great learning experience to see how the pharmacists carry out medication review and communicate with the elderly." Student Volunteer, Rachel Gan


 "It was an enriching experience for me as I have learnt how a pharmacist probe and gather additional information about medications and medical conditions even when the patients did not readily offer such information." Student Volunteer, Catherine Ho
 "It was interesting to see how pharmacists use their knowledge and skills to contribute back to the community. I have also learnt more about the counselling process for various prescription-only drugs which were not yet taught in school." Student Volunteer, Ong Chin Kheng

This outreach project would not have been possible without these dedicated volunteers:

Pharmacist Volunteers: Agnes, Grace Chang, Chen Hsueh Ni, Gui Huey Sywu, Kwok Meijun, Terence Ng, Ong Kheng Yong, Ong Seok Peng,Tee Joa Ling

Student Volunteers: Rachel  Gan Ee Ling, Catherine Ho Chun Ying, Lee Qianyu, Jonathan Ng Junming, Ong Chin Keng, Ian Tan Sheng Feng, Daphne Yeo Li Fen


PSS Ex-officios: Tan Swee Chin, Anson Lim 


Reported by

Editorial Team

PSS Communications Committee