As World Arthritis Day approaches on October 12, it’s essential to shed light on the almost four million Australians grappling with various forms of arthritis, which significantly impact their daily lives. Projections indicate that this number will rise to 5.4 million by 2030, highlighting the urgency of addressing the unique challenges faced by this community.
One of the primary challenges for arthritis patients is managing their medications effectively and safely. A frequently overlooked issue in this process is the difficulty many patients experience when trying to manage their medications.
Gerard Stevens AM, an expert in medication management and the creator of the Webster-pak, understands these challenges intimately.
“Arthritis is a common and painful condition affecting many people worldwide. Effective management is crucial, and one key aspect is handling your medications correctly. Arthritis often involves multiple medications, which can be confusing and overwhelming. With some assistance, people with arthritis can regain control of their medication routine and improve their health.” Mr Stevens says.
Recognising the need for innovative solutions, Gerard Stevens developed two ground-breaking devices designed to assist individuals with dexterity issues, including those with arthritis.
One such tool is the Webster-pak, which organises multiple medications into labelled blister packs, ensuring patients take the right medications at the correct times. According to Mr. Stevens, “Webster-Pak’s organised approach simplifies medication management for arthritis patients, reducing the risk of missed doses and complications.”
For those who need extra help, the Pil-Bob is a handy tool for easily getting medication out of the Webster-pak. It’s especially great for people with hand difficulties from arthritis or other conditions. It’s also suitable for caregivers assisting with medication administration.
“When I first came up with the Pil-Bob idea, I gave a prototype to my late mother, who was using a Webster-pak, and asked her what she thought it was for. She instinctively punctured the blister with the serrated tongue, wiggled it, and let the pills fall into the cup. Now, it’s used all over the world,” he said.
Gerard Stevens’ expert tips for managing arthritis medications:
- Consult a specialist: Seek advice from a doctor with expertise in arthritis to create a personalised treatment plan.
- Tailored plan: Collaborate with your doctor to develop a plan that suits your specific type of arthritis and medical history.
- Monitor your medications: Pay attention to how you use your medications and report any side effects to your doctor.
- Adhere to the plan: Take your medications precisely as prescribed by your doctor and maintain a healthy lifestyle with proper nutrition, exercise, and stress management. Utilise tools like the Webster-pak and Pil-Bob for assistance.
- Organise your medications: Simplify medication management with tools like the Webster-pak and Pil-Bob to ensure you take the correct doses at the right times.