Be medicinewise this R U OK? DAY

14 September 2011

NPS is proud to be a partner to R U OK? Day, a national day of action to prevent suicide, for the third year in a row. This year R U OK? Day will be held on Thursday 15 September 2011, and is a reminder for all Australians to ask their family, friends and colleagues “are you OK?”.

In line with this initiative, NPS is also encouraging people to ask questions about medicines and other treatments to help improve their own health and wellbeing — or someone else’s.

Head of Programs at NPS, Ms Karen Kaye, says that asking questions about medicines and other treatments can help people be proactive in getting the best out of their medicines and can help improve  their wellbeing — particularly if they’re managing a chronic disease or mental health problem like depression.

“It’s not always easy to deal with multiple medicines, lifestyle changes, major treatment decisions or problems like side effects, especially if you don’t know what questions to ask or where to get help,” says Ms Kaye.

“All medicines, whether prescription, over-the-counter, or complementary medicines, have both benefits and risks. Learning more about medicines helps you to use them safely and effectively, and make informed decisions about them.”

“Your doctor, pharmacist or other health professional can answer your questions about what a medicine is for, what the active ingredient is, how to use the medicine correctly, possible side effects and what to do about them, and what you should or shouldn’t do while taking the medicine.”

NPS has prepared a range of online resources to help people find out more about managing and learning about medicines and other treatments, exploring all options for improving their health, and treatments for mental health conditions. The resources are available at

For more information about your medicines, call the Medicines Line on 1300 MEDICINE (1300 633 424).

To find out more about R U OK? Day, visit

Anyone seeking support or information about mental illness or suicide prevention can contact:

Lifeline (24 hours): 13 11 14

Kids Helpline - 24 hours, for young people aged 5 to 25 years: 1800 55 1800

MensLine Australia (24 hours): 1300 78 99 78

SANE Helpline – mental illness information, support and referral: 1800 18 SANE (7263)

Reach Out - Interactive website for young people:

Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467

Beyondblue: 1300 224 636


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