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Personal medication

Please bring all your medicines with you when you come into hospital.

This gives the hospital staff looking after you a complete record of the medicines you are taking. It will make sure you do not miss any doses and prevents any confusion between medicines supplied in hospital and those left at home.

What exactly do I need to bring in?

  • Bring in all the medicines you take including tablets, liquids, capsules, creams, eye drops, inhalers, patches, sprays, injections and any medicines that you have bought from a chemist, supermarket or health food store.
  • If you are due to collect a repeat prescription supply before you come to hospital, do this as usual and bring the medicines with you. 
  • Bring your medicines in their original packs, with the chemists' labels on them. 
  • For your hospital admission if possible, do not bring in loose strips of medicines or medicines that have been transferred into another container. 
  • If you use a dosette (tablet organiser / box), and fill it yourself, bring it and the original packs to hospital with you. If a chemist fills a blister / bubble pack for you bring it and any other medicines that are not included in the pack with you.

Where will my medicines be kept?

Normally your own medicines will be used during your stay in hospital and will be stored in a locked medicines box next to your bed. The nurses will give them to you as prescribed and they will be returned to you when you go home.

What happens if I start a new medicine?

If any new medicines are started in hospital, you will be given a supply to take home if needed.

What happens if my medicines change?

The hospital pharmacist can remove any medicines that have been stopped and destroy them, with your consent. If a dose of any medicine has changed the pharmacist will supply a new pack or will re-label your own pack with the new instructions.

What happens when I leave hospital?

The hospital pharmacist or nurse will make sure you have enough medicine to last for at least 14 days, either with you in hospital or if you have more at home. You should take the letter for your GP to your surgery as soon as possible. This will make sure that you can arrange for more supplies when you need them. 

It may also be helpful to let your local pharmacist know you have been in hospital. If you show them your copy of the letter they can check any changes in medicines and make sure your prescriptions are updated.

What if I take medicines that affect bleeding e.g. warfarin and clopidogrel ?

Please check with the hospital doctor before admission when to stop these medicines. Sometimes a medicine may need to be stopped 10 days before surgery.

What if I take oral contraceptives or HRT(Hormone Replacement Therapy)?

Please check with the hospital doctor if these medicines should be stopped before admission. Sometimes these medicines may need to be stopped a few weeks before surgery.

What if I have allergies?

You will be asked if you have any allergies to medicines. It is important to tell staff if there are any medicines you have allergies to, any medicines that have given you a rash or upset your stomach. Bring a note of them with you. You will also be asked if things like elastoplast, metal or foods such as peanuts affect you.