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DRUG INFORMATION CENTER

To be an effective provider of DI, the pharmacist must exercise excellent oral and written communication skills and be able to Anticipate and evaluate the DI needs of patients and health care professionals. Obtain appropriate and complete background information as described under the section Systematic Approach for Responding to Drug Information Requests , Use a systematic approach to address DI needs by effectively searching, retrieving, and critically evaluating the literature (i.e., assessment of study design, statistics, bias, limitations, applicability and Appropriately synthesize, communicate, document,and apply pertinent information to the patient care situation.

In the last few decades, there has been a great increase in the number of new drugs available for general use. In consequence, drug information centers have been developed, particularly in the U.S.A., to disseminate information on the uses, toxicity, and cost of these drugs. Such centers have been slower to appear in the United Kingdom, with the exception of certain specialized centers, e.g. Poisons Information Bureaux.

The present report describes the development of a drug information center in Glasgow and gives preliminary data on its use during the last year. It is proposed that such centers provide valuable aid in encouraging rational drug use, particularly in hospitals. The centers may be run by a variety of interested personnel but in our view, the professional group most likely to fill this role adequately is hospital pharmacists.