Medication Pathway

Section C Medication has been suggested

Medication has been suggested for my relative, what information do I need?

When medication is suggested, it can be difficult to find good information about specific drugs. It is important that the information you use is reliable and helps you to think about whether the medication would benefit your relative.

There are several ways of getting good information about a medication:

  • The doctor who suggested the medication should be able to answer most of your questions about the medication
  • Your local pharmacist should also have some useful information about specific medications, for example side effects and interactions with other medication
  • The electronic Medicines Compendium (eMC) has information about specific medications, including Patient Information Leaflets and information on how to use and prescribe a medication. You can search for the medication suggested for your relative through the eMC website.
  • The NHS Choice website has reliable information about medicines and other treatments.

When you are looking for information, remember to check the spelling and whether the name is a medication name (‘generic’) or a brand name specific to the drug company. For example, sertraline is a generic name and Lustral is a brand name for the same medication. You will need to search for the generic name of the medication.

Information about medicines can be very complicated and when information is given to someone with a learning disability, autism or both, it must follow the NHS Accessible Information Standard. This standard aims to make sure that any person with a disability is given information they can understand so they can communicate about their treatment as much as possible.

As well as finding information about the medication that has been suggested, it is important to keep accurate information about the medication your relative is already taking. This can be recorded on a Health Action Plan for your relative, with the start date, review dates and doses of every medication.