Medicines information for multicultural communities

Although medicines can help improve the health of consumers, all medicines have risks as well as benefits. The risks for culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) consumers can be higher, particularly for those with low English language proficiency and literacy levels.

In addition to our translated health information, NPS MedicineWise, the Federation of Ethnic Communities’ Councils of Australia (FECCA) and our other partners have resources that organisations can use to promote the quality use of medicines to CALD consumers.

Translated health information about medicines

NPS works with FECCA and other partners to provide translated health information about medicines. This translated information will help you become more familiar with medicines, manage medicines safely and learn more about your medicine options. Information is available in Arabic, Chinese (simplified), Chinese (traditional), Croatian, Greek, Italian, Korean, Macedonian, Spanish and Vietnamese.

MedicinesTalk

Written by consumers for consumers, MedicinesTalk is a free quarterly publication that provides reliable, accurate information and useful hints on managing medicines. Organisations can translate articles for their newsletters or community radio. Download MedicinesTalk articles.

Community education sessions

NPS MedicineWise partners with community organisations to present medicines education sessions in-language, covering topics such as 'Why are we offered a choice of medicine? and 'Safe and wise use of medicines'.

You will learn about medicines — including prescription medicines, over-the-counter medicines (medicines bought at a pharmacy or supermarket without a prescription), vitamins, supplements and herbal remedies.

The sessions will cover the importance of knowing your medicines, including when and how to use them and what questions you can discuss with your doctor, pharmacist or other health professional before starting a new medicine. Call your community organisation to attend a session.

NPS Medicines Line (1300 MEDICINE)

Call Medicines Line on 1300 MEDICINE (1300 633 424). NPS MedicineWise works with healthdirect Australia to provide consumers with information on prescription, over-the-counter and herbal and natural medicines. Calls to Medicines Line will be answered by a healthdirect Australia registered nurse. Note this is not an emergency service and does not replace advice from your doctor or pharmacist. This service is available Monday to Friday 9am-5pm AEST.

If you need an interpreter, call the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) National on 131 450 and ask to speak to NPS Medicines Line on 1300 633 424.

Free telephone interpreting service for pharmacists

Registered pharmacies around Australia are able to access free telephone interpreting services 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Pharmacies should register with the Translation and Interpreting Service (TIS) National on 131 450.

Queries and questions?

Please email NPS MedicineWise with any questions or queries on promoting the safe use of medicines with CALD consumers.