3 Things to Check Once Your Online Medication Arrives

3 Things to Check Once Your Online Medication Arrives

After spending years paying more for your prescription medication, you finally decided to make the leap into ordering your medicines online. You were impressed with the website’s interface, ease of uploading your prescription, availability to ask questions, and check how quickly you could order your prescriptions. Digital ordering and delivery have grown 300% faster.

Within a couple of days, a package arrives containing your order. Like a kid on Christmas morning, you open your package to reveal its contents. What happens next? You’re used to picking up prescriptions from the local pharmacy, but this is a new experience, and you don’t want to make a mistake.

Here are three things to check once your order arrives at your home:

Is Your Entire Order There?

Regardless of whether you placed an order for a single medicine or grabbed several medications at once, the first thing you should check when opening the package is to ensure the order is correct.

The shipping package should contain a manifest of what’s inside the box. You should also have a receipt showing exactly what you ordered. Compare these two lists. It’s possible that some prescriptions needed more time and will arrive in a separate package. Your original order confirmation may indicate this or it might be clear from comparing the included paperwork against your order.

Now it’s time to pull out each medication. You want to examine the entire box’s content:

  • Did you get all of the medications that you ordered?
  • Did you get the correct amount?
  • Is the dose amount right?

If there is anything missing from your order, any discrepancies, or any other issues, contact your online pharmacy right away to explore options for making things right.

At PharmaServe, we go through multiple levels of quality assurance to ensure that your order is correct. If there is an issue, we do everything we can to make it right as soon as possible.

Confirm You Understand How to Use Your Prescriptions

It’s critical that you understand the proper way to actually take your medication. Before you start organizing and storing your medicines, make sure you know how they should be taken, even if you’ve used the same or similar prescriptions before.

Medicines come with all kinds of instructions:

  • Take it with or without food
  • What time of days
  • How to administer the medication (number of tablets, injection sites, etc.)
  • What happens if you miss a dose
  • Possible side effects

While prescription containers often have instructions on or with them, it’s not always clear to the average patient. Go over your newly arrived prescriptions and make sure you understand the best practices for properly using your medicine.

You’ll also want to know what kinds of side effects you can encounter with these meds. Even if you’ve been taking a prescription for years, it’s never a bad idea to review what you can expect. More importantly, make sure you know which side effects are serious enough to require a follow-up with your physician or a trip to the emergency department.

If you find yourself uncertain about how to take your medications or what you can expect from them, call your online pharmacy right away. The team at PharmaServe is always available to answer your questions and walk through your prescriptions with you. While we’re here to assist, if you find yourself in a medical emergency, please call 911 immediately.

Organize and Store Your Prescriptions

Now that you’re sure that you have your complete order and understand how to use your prescriptions, it’s time to put everything away in an organized manner. You always want to know where a particular medicine is when it’s needed. It’s also important that medications are stored in a safe enough way that curious toddlers can get into them.

Make sure to examine your medications’ instructions for storage as some might require refrigeration or be placed in a cool, dry spot. Insulin storage, for example, depends highly on the exact brand and kind of medicine. You can’t assume that the instructions for storing your previous brand are exactly the same as a new brand’s instructions.

A strategy you should also consider is putting medications in a place that makes sense. If all things are equal, store all of your prescriptions in one spot. This makes it easier to organize and keep safe. In other situations, it could be beneficial to store meds in a place that makes taking your medicine easier. For example, you might store prescriptions that you take before bed in your master bath—those meds can be part of your regular bedtime routine. Medications you take in the morning with food might best be stored in an area close to where you eat breakfast.

Keep Check of Expiration Dates when Ordering Online Medication

Part of organizing your medications also involves keeping track of expiration dates. You may have meds that are only taken as needed instead of on a regular routine. These drugs expire and shouldn’t be taken beyond their use. If a medication does expire, make sure to dispose of it properly.

Try to keep your medications separate from other people’s meds in your household. If you must share a cupboard or cabinet, take measures to ensure everyone knows where their particular meds live.

The other thing to consider is if you have a method for taking your meds each day, especially if you take multiple drugs. This is when pill organizers/boxes come in handy. Just make sure the original bottles are readily available in case you have questions as you go.

In general, you want to store and organize your meds in a way that makes it easy to keep track of and take them as required. It’s recommended to use a location that has a flat surface or plenty of light. Never mix medication into a single bottle and keep all lids tightly closed at all times.

The Bottom Line

Ordering your prescriptions online from a company like PharmaServe is an exciting way to save money on the meds you need along with the added convenience of staying in the comfort of your own home. Just like with anything else you order online, you want to double-check that your order is accurate and complete when ordering online medication, that you understand what you’ve ordered, and that you can store it properly and safely.

If you’re interested in saving money on your prescriptions or have questions about how online pharmacies work, contact PharmaServe today for all of your online pharmacy needs.

Dr. Conor Sheehy, PharmD, BCPS is a practicing clinical pharmacist that works in primary care. He supports other members of the healthcare team including physicians, mid-level providers, nurses, and other clinical staff. He also likes to use his drug knowledge to inform his patients and the public about the benefits and risks they can expect from their medications. His clinical specialties include: anticoagulation, diabetes management, and psychiatric care.

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