Marcos Pascual Cruz
Commercial Director
Association of Pharmacies of Mexico (ANAFARMEX)
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Expert Contributor

Preventive Medicine in the Clinics Attached to Pharmacies

By Marcos Pascual | Tue, 03/01/2022 - 11:00

In November 2019, a decree was published in the Official Gazette of the Federation through which various provisions of the General Health Law were reformed, added and repealed. In article 77 bis 1, it was established that: "The protection of health will be guaranteed by the State, under criteria of universality and equality; it must generate the conditions that allow providing free, progressive, effective, timely access, of quality and without discrimination to medical services ... that comprehensively meet health needs, through the combination of health promotion, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation interventions, selected as a priority according to criteria of safety, efficacy, effectiveness…"

With the help of technology and the coverage of the pharmacy network with its primary healthcare services in the private market, progress is being made in electronic medical records, video medical consultations, diagnoses, treatments, digital prescriptions, purchase of medicines online, geo-location and in wellness based on a new culture of healthy lifestyles, new types of diets, level of physical activity, degree of stress and quality of sleep. This also includes fostering the care and maintenance of health and the creation of an up-to-date medical and health history.

The evolution of telemedicine during COVID has generated growth in medical care in remote areas with the help of interactive sound and image communications, which has facilitated follow-ups with elderly patients or those with mobility difficulties; however, on the subject of providing a diagnosis remotely, it continues to be questioned by those practitioners who prefer to practice in-person.

Occupational medicine is another new development within primary healthcare services.

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines occupational health as a multidisciplinary activity that promotes and protects the health of workers. This discipline seeks to control accidents and illnesses by reducing risk conditions.

Occupational health is not limited to managing the physical conditions of the worker but also deals with psychological issues. For employers, occupational health means support for the improvement of the worker and the maintenance of their work capacity. It can also manage the stress caused by work activity or by workplace relationships.

One great demand we see in the network of pharmacy-adjacent medical offices (FAMO) and consulting rooms is the hiring of general practitioners who wish to provide their services in the more than 18,000 FAMOs in the country. The specialization of leaders in the "Administration of Medical Consulting Rooms” is a response to the need to have the service of a primary care professional in the nearest pharmacy without any obstacles. For the administration and operation of one or more pharmacies with an annex consulting room, it is difficult to carry out or develop this administration, even more so when the professional refuses to work in the different localities of the country or the number of professionals in those areas is scarce. For this reason, we are seeing more and more platforms with networks of doctors to serve the market. This has already been developing in the insurance environment with excellent progress and results for those who take out insurance.

For all of the above, the network of private pharmacies is an ally in the protection of health. It helps to meet the demands of our society, so that access to health services and prevention will continue to develop and evolve within the clinics of pharmacies through technology, administration of medical offices and above all, with the approval of electronic instruments that massively facilitate the information of the patient who comes to our pharmacy-adjacent medical offices.

Photo by:   Marcos Pascual Cruz