Minor Ailment Assessments
WHAT IS A MINOR AILMENT?
A minor ailment is a less serious medical condition that does not require lab or blood tests. Examples include cold sores, mild eczema, oral thrush, heartburn, hay fever, skin rash, fungal skin infections and yeast infections.
HOW CAN MY PHARMACIST HELP WITH A MINOR AILMENT?
Once the regulations are passed and pharmacists complete an orientation session, pharmacists will be able to prescribe a prescription level medication when necessary rather than recommending a milder over- the-counter treatment for certain less serious conditions.
WHAT MINOR AILMENTS WILL PHARMACISTS BE ABLE TO ASSESS?
The list includes 32 minor ailments. The list is almost identical to the one already being applied in Nova Scotia. That list was developed in consultation with doctors in that province.
Allergic Rhinitis (hay fever)
Calluses and Corns
Contact Allergic Dermatitis (allergic skin rash)
Dysmenorrhea (pre-menstrual and menstrual pain)
Fungal Infections of the Skin
Gastro-esophageal Reflux Disease (Heartburn)
Herpes Simplex (cold sores)
Mild to Moderate Eczema
Mild Urticaria (hives, bug bites and stings)
Minor Joint Pain
Minor Muscle Pain
Minor Sleep Disorders
Oral Fungal Infection (thrush)
Oral Ulcers (canker sores)
Threadworms and Pinworms
Urinary Tract Infection (uncomplicated)
Vaginal Candidiasis (yeast infection)
Warts (excluding facial and genital)
Xerophthalmia (dry eyes)
I ALWAYS GET MY PRESCRIPTIONS FROM MY DOCTOR. IS IT SAFE TO GET PRESCRIPTION FROM A PHARMACIST?
Pharmacists are highly trained, educated and trusted health care professionals. They are the medication experts. Their university curriculum includes training on the assessment and treatment of these minor ailments. The minor ailments program includes mandatory regulations that oversee the scope of what a pharmacist can do.
In addition, all licensed pharmacists will complete mandatory training on the processes and standards they are asked to follow before they can offer you this service.
New Brunswick pharmacists have had the ability to prescribe medications under certain circumstance since 2008. They can already replace, extend and renew some existing prescriptions; issue a new prescription for pre-existing conditions in an emergency situation; alter prescriptions to accommodate special needs; change the drug dosage/formulation and make therapeutic substitutions.
Increased pharmacist involvement will actually help monitor which patients should be referred to physicians instead of patients self-treating indefinitely. This will help reduce the risk for patients.