What is self-care?
World Health Organisation defines self-care as “the ability of individuals, families and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and to cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a healthcare provider”.
How could pharmacists promote self-care?
In order to promote self-care, pharmacists provide health-related learning and information to individuals through educational materials (e.g. leaflets, posters and social media posts), talks/workshops, counselling and advice on lifestyle changes and healthcare products.
Image courtesy of Health In Action Community Pharmacy via http://www.hia.org.hk/pharmacy/en/home-2/
Image courtesy of Lok Sin Tong Community Pharmacy via https://www.facebook.com/loksintongcommunitypharmacy/
Wise and informed selection of insect repellent for prevention of infectious disease:
For individuals who concern about insect bites or plan to travel to endemic regions of insect-transmitted disease, pharmacists would provide information about different brands of insect repellent and advise them on the most suitable choice. Information leaflet and lifestyle advice would also be given.
Self-care to prevent and manage nappy rash:
Some caregivers read about nappy rash on the internet and worried about this would happen to their babies. Pharmacists would give recommendation on the methods to keep the diaper clean and choice of products to prevent nappy rash.
This service targets the general public, especially the underprivileged and undereducated.
Service aims and objectives
- To support individuals to cope with health issues in daily life by improving individuals’ health literacy (ability to find, understand, and use information to make appropriate health-related decisions for themselves and others).
- To encourage individuals’ self-reliance and self-management.
- To empower individuals to come up with methods and make the best decision when encountering health-related problems.
- To boost community participation and empowerment to support resources transfer and reduce the burden on secondary care services.
With this service, individuals would acquire basic but important health knowledge and skills to manage common health problems. They will be aware of their potential ability to make appropriate health-related decision for themselves and their family.