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I am new to Singapore and my prescriptions are about to run out. Blood pressure treatment etc. I am seeing a doctor @ Novena for scripts but I already know their pharmacy does not hold the medicines I take. I dont want to trial new meds because I have been taking my current ones for a year now without side effects. Can you advise on what my best course of action might be?
I agree with Dr Ethan’s plan.
I have an alternative, if you know a particular GP near your house well, strike a deal with him to order the specific medicine you need.
The caveat is, you probably need to commit to buying at least 6 – 12 months’ supply, before he/she will consider ordering it specially for you. And you will have to pay upfront first.
That way you can also consult him regularly for monitoring your condition, and also get the specific medicine you need.
Welcome to Singapore! The best course of action for you would be to:
1. Check if your particular brand/type of medication is licensed for sale in Singapore.
– You can search the database of registered medicines in Singapore on the official government site here. Example of search result below:
– Alternatively, this other database search which is run independently by a Singaporean pharmacist is more straightforward to use.
2. After you’ve confirmed your medication is licensed for sale in Singapore, the next thing to do would be to call up public or private institutes to check if their pharmacy stocks the medication.
– I know it’s a bit of a pain, but unfortunately this is the only method to ensure that your particular brand of medication is stocked.
– For public institutions, your best bet would probably be ringing up the SGH/NUH/TTSH pharmacies.
– For private institutions, the bigger pharmacy companies in Singapore to check up are Guardian/Watsons/Unity.
Public institutions tend to stock none brand-name, generic medications, especially when it comes to hypertensive medications, although sometimes they do carry other types/brands too.
If your hypertensive medications are combination-type drugs (eg. Hyzaar, Diovan), you may have better luck with the private institutions.
If your brand of medication is truly not available in Singapore, the in-between ground may be that the pharmacist offers you another brand of drug, which contains exactly the same active ingredient.
Absolutely agreed with Dr Israr and Dr Ethan.
Better to consult and stick to a doctor who will continue to followup on your care but please give them a week advance notice to make sure the medications are available. Some brands might not be available in Singapore, so an alternative might be needed