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Rockford PharmD Students Teach Girl Scouts About Medication Safety

Rockford P1 students and a Rockford faculty member led a girl scout meeting in Belvidere, IL where they worked with 27 Daisy and Junior level girls and one little boy. The students were: Whitney Bennett, Emily Beskar, Cassidy Joy, and Annita Mathew and were assisted by Dr. Heidi Olson, Clinical Pharmacist and RPHARM Program Director.

The PharmD students and faculty member worked with the girls in creating lip-balm to teach about compounding medications, and they also read the book, “Five Little Monkeys with Nothing to Do” and used it to lead a conversation with the girls about medication safety. The activities in which the children participated are part of an educational toolkit compiled by the pharmacy students, Dr. Heidi Olson, and the Illinois Poison Control Center.  

Since prescription and over-the-counter medicines are typically accessible and visible in homes, Dr. Olson and the P1 students believe the children should understand medication safety at an early age. Research shows that an individual's risk of misusing prescription medications increases as they reach middle and high school.  Actions that parents can take to help prevent children from taking part in this behavior include: 

  • Talking to your child about how to safely use, store and dispose of medications
  • Secure your medicines in a locked medicine cabinet
  • Properly dispose of extra medications, or participate in your local community's drug take-back events