Our guide to medication awareness training


Working with or distributing medication is a very important role and one which requires a strong knowledge of drug groups, side effects and such matters alike. It could be really dangerous if the recipients of the medication were to be given the wrong drugs or dose at the wrong time or if they were administered incorrectly. It is therefore imperative that as someone working with patients or if there are people who are receiving drugs from you, that you are up to date with your medication awareness. There are medication awareness training courses available to you if you’re currently working in healthcare, or are aspiring to work as a care professional.


What will a course involve?

A medication awareness course will take you through a number of different aspects of drugs and medication. Courses tend to be for people who are just getting into this field or those who are requiring a refresher course either by choice or as a compulsory measure.

Modules on courses range from the dispensing methods and procedures, as well as medical record keeping and the proper disposal of expired medication, in line with legislation, of which you will also be taught on. Every kind of care service, whether it’s a GP or a dental surgery has to adhere to the standards set by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). It is well worth looking at their website to get an early idea of what is expected from someone who is administering medicine.

You’ll be shown the ins and outs of understanding medical administration record (MAR) sheets which is very important for understanding a person’s needs whether that’s what their daily dosage should be or whether they have any allergies, no matter how severe or seemingly minor.

Courses tend to be set over a short period of time, some lasting little longer than a day whereas others are available as solely online based courses. They are also quite flexible so you can book the according to your time and lifestyle constraints.


How will a course benefit me?

Many of the courses on offer are taught by guidelines and standards set by the CQC who regulate all care services whether it’s on the NHS or private. Taking a course set to their guidelines will help you out and put you in the best possible position to succeed in your chosen career.

Any course in medication awareness will put you in the right direction towards gaining a career in nursing or any of the care services in the country. A sound understanding of medication awareness is vital when working with patients and any qualifications you gain will make you more desirable to potential employers.


Myth-busting some medication beliefs

-          Most of us are aware that you shouldn’t wash down pills with alcohol, but most aren’t aware that a little gulp of water isn’t good either. If you drink plenty of water it is less likely that the pill will dissolve before it reaches your stomach.


-          Antibiotics don’t actually treat all forms of illnesses. They are only really prescribed when a bacterial infection has been diagnosed as opposed to a viral one which will be unaffected by antibiotics.


-           Once prescribed a course of medication, no matter how much better you may feel half way through, it is never advised to just stop taking the medicine. The prescription is a well measured course of medicine that has been set accordingly to best treat you, only completing half of it increases the chances of falling back into illness.


-          Some of us believe that an extra one or two paracetemol tablets will have a stronger effect on that nagging headache, but overdoing the advised dosage is never a good idea. Like a prescription, the dosage is a careful calculation set for what will be best for the person taking, and overdosing, even by the slightest amount, could be detrimental rather than beneficial to your condition.


-          Just because your prescription might be sealed in a childproof bottle or in a pill packet, that doesn’t mean it isn’t susceptible to the elements. All medication, whether they’re packed pills or bottled liquids must be properly stored in a cool, dry place away from light. If exposed too much they could be affected by damp conditions or heat.



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