Child Life supports families across Nova Scotia with medication tips

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Jennifer Dickerson photo by Ryan Wilson IWK Health

As pharmacy technicians across Nova Scotia recently expanded their scope of practice, Child Life Specialists at IWK Health were called on for their expertise. Pharmacy technicians needed to support families with tips on how to get children to successfully take medications, and Child Life had experience with medication support for inpatients.

With the looming shortage of children’s liquid medication, the goal was to develop an easily accessible tip sheet or ‘how to’ for children learning to take oral medications, particularly pills. Child Life Specialists Chantal Beaver and Jenn Dickerson compiled and created resources to help families with medication/pill taking tips. User-friendly handouts were created that could be distributed as pamphlets, digitally shared, or scanned through QR codes to enable easy and widespread use.

Chantal Beaver photo by Ryan Wilson IWK Health

“The goal was to put relevant information into hands of families,” says Beaver. “It also meant pharmacy staff would now have a useful handout to help families and children struggling to get their medications in.”

Child Life also presented to community pharmacists at the Pharmacy NS conference in October where they were able to discuss in depth helping children and teens struggling with medication compliance and pill swallowing.

March is Child Life Month.