Mountain View Medical Supply

Thursday, May 29, 2014

What You Wash Your Medication Down With Matters!

Did you know fruit juices can cause significant drug interactions?  Many people assume their medication will work no matter what they swallow it down with it, but some drink and drug combos can be hazardous to your health.  

Acidic drinks, such as fruit juice or soda pop, may chemically destroy certain kinds of antibiotics, including penicillin and erythromycin.  Grapefruit juice alone negatively interacts with more than 50 medications, including statins which are widely used to lower cholesterol.  And since the effects of the citrus juice last more than 24 hours, simply taking your meds at a different time won’t solve the problem.

Milk can interfere with a number of medicines.  For example, milk blocks the action of tetracycline if both are ingested within an hour of each other, preventing the treatment of infection.  Milk is alkaline so, for example, if it is taken with Ducolax (laxative) which has a coating designed to dissolve slowly in the intestines, it may dissolve prematurely within the stomach and cause irritation.  Calcium in any dairy products can interfere with the effectiveness of thyroid medication.  

Caffeine from coffee, tea or energy drinks can pose a serious health threat when taken with stimulants such as ephedrine, amphetamines or asthma prescriptions.  Green tea (with vitamin K) can decrease the effect of blood thinners such as Warfarin and Coumadin.  The tannin in tea can undo the benefits of iron pills.  

Sports drinks such as Gatorade are high in potassium and can be dangerous when coupled with some heart failure or hypertension drugs.  

Energy drinks high in sugar and stimulants such as caffeine aren’t good for anybody, but combining them with antidepressants can cause hypertension, headaches, fast heart rate and even stroke.  Some drinks add things like ginkgo biloba for enhancement, but ginkgo biloba taken with aspirin can cause bleeding.

Of course alcohol presents one of the most common interactions.  Beer, wine and hard liquor should be avoided when taking just about any type of medication, especially antidepressants or other drugs that effect the brain.  Mixing alcohol with over the counter anti-inflammatory drugs or pain relievers can increase your risk of stomach bleeding or liver damage.  

The very best beverage to take your medication with is WATER!  It will not interact with your medication or reduce its effectiveness!

What can you do to prevent drug interactions?
1)  Read the label of your medication thoroughly to verify how you should take your medication and heed any warnings.  If you have any questions, talk with your pharmacist and doctor.

2)  Make a complete list of all your prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, supplements and any other drugs you may take.  Review this list with your doctor and pharmacists.

3)  Use one pharmacy.  This way your pharmacist has a record of all your prescriptions and can advise you effectively. 

4)  Do some research on your medications. 
a)  Walgreens has a great drug vs drug interaction tool since it offers correct dosage options that other tools do not.
b) offers a complete A-Z index on over 24,000 medications in the USA.  For example, searching “Coumadin” provided pill and injection information, side effects, news regarding Coumadin, and further down the page was “Coumadin drug interactions”.  Clicking on that provided a wealth of interactions specific to Coumadin, including the “5 alcohol/food interactions”.

Finding drug vs beverage interactions is a bit more difficult than drug vs food, and far more difficult than finding drug vs drug interactions.  The information is out there, you just have to be persistent and dig deeper.  Live well and be well! 

HME Providers Look for Escape, "Just take my business over"

Adapted from HME News, HME Providers Look For Escape, by Leah Hoenen; Friday, April 25, 2014

We have blogged many times about Competitive Bidding for the HME/DME (Home Medical Equipment/Durable Medical Equipment) Industry.  (The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 200, effectively known as H.R. 6331, or simply, Competitive Bidding)

Medicare Competitive Bidding and What it Means For the Consumer

We at Mountain View Medical Supply are a small, family owned and operated business and cannot competitively bid against the likes of CVS or Walgreens, so we made the decision to exit the Medicare/Medicaid provider program in 2009.  You see, the government Competitive Bidding program was tailored for large scale providers with many branch locations, so the mom-and-pop providers who couldn't compete or win bids, are struggling to survive.  As a result, some HME providers are asking other providers to purchase their businesses.  

"If CMS wanted to tear the industry apart and take the 'mom and pop' out of it, this bid has been successful," said Terry Luft, a vice chairman at Harrisbug, PA-based Dynamic Healthcare Services (DHS).  In April, DHS completed its third buy of this year, and after an acquisition is publicized, the company often receives several phone calls from other companies looking for an exit strategy, he said.  

In June 2011, took a poll asking providers, "Will you bid in Round 2 of Competitive Bidding?"  A shocking 60 percent of HME participants said they are trying to sell or close their HME businesses before Round 2 of competitive bidding.

Majority of Providers Want Out

Our HME/DME industry as a whole has been very vocal with Competitive Bidding concerns in Washington D.C., but not only did CMS continue with Round 2 bidding, a re-bid of Round 1 was launched in the first quarter of this year.  It is now clear that if Competitive Bidding has not reached your area, it is coming soon for those who have to go through Medicare/Medicaid for HME/DME.  

For those who can pay out of pocket, visit your local mom and pop shop!  Mountain View Medical Supply is one of the "lucky ones" who diversified by adding a second business (Laurel Uniforms & Apparel).  And even though it has benefited our business somewhat, it saddens us that several of our competitors have closed their doors in the Denver Metro area.  

"President Obama is committed to helping America’s small businesses grow and prosper." - The White House 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Happy Memorial Day!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Attention New Ostomates: FREE Information Booklet!

Published by Mountain View Medical Supply, this informative booklet is written for the new ostomate, and their supporters, to help them through this life changing experience.

AND ITS FREE!  Click HERE to request your free copy!

Inside this information-filled booklet, you will find: 
Glossary of Terms - learn about "convex", "cut to fit", "flange" and any term related to ostomies. 
Finding & Buying Ostomy Supplies - Finding local supplies, online supplies and guidelines on what you should expect from your ostomy supplier.  Also, how to calculate and save on your ostomy supplies!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) - Most frequently asked questions from new ostomates.
Insurance more and order your FREE copy>

Monday, May 12, 2014

We are a locally owned and operated Small Business!

Shop and Support small businesses!  We are the heartbeat of America!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Get Paid to Gear Up in Scrubs!

During May and June: 
Earn up to $25 when you gear up with Dickies scrubs!