Take As Directed: Your Prescription for Safe Health Care in Canada - ECW Press

Take As Directed: Your Prescription for Safe Health Care in Canada

MacKinnon, Dr. Neil

  • Take As Directed gives Canadians a much-needed guidebook to safely navigate our encounters with health-care providers and optimize the management of our own health. In recent years, evidence indicating that our health-care system can be made safer has emerged. Here, a family physician and a pharmacy professor discuss the role each of us can play in achieving the best and safest possible health outcome for ourselves and our families. In clear and engaging language, Take As Directed walks the reader through the call to the family doctor’s receptionist, the examination room encounter, the pharmacy counter, a visit to the emergency department, and a stay on the hospital ward, and outlines common pitfalls in these encounters. Health-care consumers will learn how to provide critical information to their caregivers and know what information they must obtain from them. Since many adverse health outcomes are related to the use of medications, readers will learn how to safely and effectively use their prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs.

    Take As Directed is the first and definitive source book to:

    • offer down-to-earth advice on how Canadians can obtain good health care, even in a “sick” system.
    • outline communication styles of health-care providers and offer tried-and-true tips and tricks on dealing with various “bedside manners.”
    • offer guidance on optimizing the use of medications at home and reducing the chances of experiencing an adverse drug event, one of the commonest reasons for visits to Canadian emergency departments.
    • identify trustworthy sources of health and medication information on the web.
    • All health-care consumers will benefit from the sage voices of the authors, two of Canada’s most respected health-care professionals.


    Rhonda Church, M.D., has almost two decades of experience as a cradle-to-grave family physician. She currently practises in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, where she is on staff at the South Shore Regional Hospital. Neil MacKinnon, Ph.D., FCSHP, is Associate Director of Research, College of Pharmacy, and Associate Professor, School of Health Services Administration and Department of Community Health and Epidemiology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

  • Published: September 2010

    ISBN: 9781550229523

    Dimensions: 6 x 9 in.

    Pages: 312


Take As Directed covers everything from prescriptions and hospital stays to electronic health records and medical errors, and tell you how to get the most from our health-care system.” — Canadian Living

“In particular, the book focuses on safety, especially preventable adverse health outcomes due to the use of prescription and over-the-counter drugs. It also addresses concerns from patients about the lack of access to care and treatments, proving them with some shrewd insights into the realities and complexities of Canada's health-care system.” — Medical Post

“An invaluable new resource to help Canadians navigate the health care system, especially in relation to medication safety.” — Canadian Family Physician Magazine

“A sensible, honest look at the state of affairs of Canada’s health care system.” —Shelf Life