Petrina Douglas-Hall is the Medicines Information Manager at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM). She has worked as a Pharmacist for thirty years and is part of a team answering Mental Health medication Telephone Advice & Guidance calls via the Consultant Connect service.
Petrina, who speaks to GPs across the U.K., thinks that Telephone Advice & Guidance is a useful tool for primary care clinicians as well as for patients as;
“I can provide accurate and up-to-date medication information at the end of a phone line.”
She feels very strongly about the beneficial effects of Telephone Advice & Guidance and continues that;
“Feedback received from clinicians has been very positive as they receive quick access to practical advice to treat their patients effectively.”
In terms of what she would say to clinicians who are yet to use the service, Petrina states that “We help GPs to formulate medication treatment plans for their most difficult to treat patients. Give us a try and find out for yourself!”
Petrina has provided the following example of when she was able to help a GP with the management of their patient.
A GP, who had a patient with depression, called Petrina via Consultant Connect. The patient was taking sertraline but wanted to switch back to mirtazapine. The reason for this was that it helped the patient to sleep better but the GP was unsure how to handle switching the medication.
How Telephone Advice & Guidance helped:
Petrina was able to formulate “a switching regime that was appropriate for the patient.” This was a great result for the patient who received rapid results and the best possible care.
In this case, Telephone Advice & Guidance was important as the GP was able to get rapid support when they needed it and the patient remained in primary care.