A new fertility education service is being offered for free at Local Pharmacy, which have branches in New Ross and Taghmon.
Superintendent Pharmacist for the Local Pharmacy Group, Adam Esa, said: “We’ve spent the past year developing a new service called My Fertility Pharmacy.”
Targeting any patient either beginning or undertaking their fertility journey, as part of the pharmacies research into developing this service, they took a qualitative approach where pharmacists discussed in detail with a number of fertility patients across Ireland about their fertility journey and how pharmacies can support them within community pharmacy.
“Through that, using integration of our new software, we thereby developed a service in line with what patients are looking for. We are trying to tackle any taboo subjects.
“One that is stigmatised is the fertility journey. We interviewed a number of patients throughout Ireland.”
He said empowering patients with knowledge along their fertility journey is key.
“It could be at the start when a couple are trying for a child or someone diagnosed with a condition or a male with a low sperm count. We ask them about their lifestyle choices, diet, treatment.
”We have empowered all our pharmacists so having been consulted people feel they can start or continue on their journey.”
Life Pharmacy have their own in-house software in all branches and hope the roll this out nationwide.
“It documents everything in a cohesive manner for doctors and nurses so they can have background knowledge. A lot of doctors aren’t experts in the area of fertility and a lot of people are having to go privately.”
Acting as a middleman in the process – at a time when it can be difficult to access GP care in many practices – the pharmacy partners with clinics across Ireland.
“We are doing this, especially for patients in the south east. We are researching Artificial Intelligence as art of the software.”