Jane: Organising and storing medicines – Storing medicines using dose aids

Listen to patients and health professionals speak about their experience with taking multiple medicines.

Age at interview: 53
Number of medicines: 8
Cultural background: Anglo-Australian

Jane has tried a number of different medication organisers and has recently changed to a different one to accommodate a new medication regimen. She has a strategy for filling it to avoid making mistakes with her medicines.

Just at the chemist. There are different packs of different sizes. The $2 shops have the size of what I like and they have the four different things … the morning, noon, afternoon and evening. As I've juggled my tablets on different days, the night ones don't all fit in that box anymore, so I've gone to different-coloured ones that are harder to open, [laughs] yeah. I guess I've just tried different things and think well, they're certainly helpful and they work. 

One day a week, my thyroxine is a different dose and I double it, so I just put a little bit of red nail polish on Mondays, because Monday's the day I have two of those at night, so when I'm putting them in the monthly thing, I make sure that, you know, my Mondays are all correct. Even just having a strategy of putting them in the containers, it sounds ridiculous, but it's really helpful to just do all of the small ones at the beginning and to put them all in order and to remove them from where I'm sitting even, because if you get distracted, you know, sometimes they look the same. And yeah, I do worry about that. Have I put the right ones, in the right spots, at the right time?

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The Living with multiple medicines project was developed in collaboration with Healthtalk Australia.