Bert Newton and Dr John D’Arcy launch Be Medicinewise Week 2013

14 October 2013

On Monday 14 October, Bert Newton and celebrity GP, Dr John D’Arcy, will join NPS MedicineWise to launch Be Medicinewise Week 2013, urging everyone to take part in a national medicinewise challenge.

Now in its third year, Be Medicinewise Week gives people the tools and resources they need to make safer and more informed decisions about their medicines and their health.

This year, the national initiative is focused on Australia’s ageing population and Be Medicinewise Week ambassador, Dr John D’Arcy, is urging everyone to get involved.

“It’s clear that Australians need to be more medicinewise. Around 1.5 million people experience a medicines-related problem each year and hospitals see 190,000 admissions per year as a result,” says Dr D’Arcy.

“As we get older, experience chronic health issues, and start to take more medicines, the risk of experiencing medicines problems will increase. One in three unplanned hospital admissions involving older people are medicines-related.

“But we know that many of these medicines problems can be prevented which is why NPS MedicineWise is working to build a medicinewise Australia and reduce the number of medicines problems people experience.”

During Be Medicinewise Week, Dr D’Arcy is urging everyone to take part in a daily medicine challenge:

  • Monday: Know the active ingredient in your medicines
    Every medicine has an active ingredient that makes it work. Find the active ingredient name on your medicines to make sure you’re not doubling up.
  • Tuesday: Make a medicines list
    Keep track of your medicines with an NPS Medicines List. Note down all of your prescription, over-the-counter and complementary medicines and share the list with everyone involved in your healthcare.
  • Wednesday: Clean out your medicines cabinet
    Medicines come in many forms and can easily accumulate around the house. Spring clean your medicines cabinet today and return your out-of-date or unwanted medicines to any pharmacy for safe disposal.
  • Thursday: Follow medicines instructions
    Medicines instructions are important but they can sometimes be hard to follow. Read your medicines labels and packaging carefully and visit for detailed information about your prescription and pharmacist-only medicines.
  • Friday: Ask questions about your medicines

Be an active partner in your health care. Ask about the risks and benefits of your medicines. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist, visit or call 1300 MEDICINE (1300 633 424).

For more information about Be Medicinewise Week visit

or visit to join the conversation with Bert Newton.


Independent, evidence-based and not-for-profit, NPS MedicineWise enables better decisions about medicines and medical tests. We are funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.

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