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Schriever pharmacy provides free OTC medication

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Tech. Sgt. Kevin Kramer, 21st Medical Squadron support flight chief, hands an over-the-counter medication to an Airman at the 21st MDS pharmacy at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, Dec. 5, 2017. The squadron’s OTC Medication Program provides free medication from a preselected list to those eligible without an appointment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class William Tracy)

pharmacy

Medications available for free through the 21st Medical Squadron pharmacy’s Over-the-Counter Medication Program are on display in the 21st MDS clinic at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, Dec. 5, 2017. There are approximately 40 medications currently available through the program, treating a variety of maladies, such as coughs and headaches. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class William Tracy)

SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo.-- --

When it comes to common colds and ailments, the prices for over-the-counter medications can stack up; fortunately, for Schriever Airmen, the 21st Medical Squadron’s pharmacy has a solution to save both time and money.

The new OTC Medication Program provides medication for eligible Airmen to treat common symptoms such as nasal congestion, colds, headaches and more, right at the pharmacy without an appointment.

“You used to have two options when you got sick; either call the clinic and set up an appointment to be seen, or go to a store and pay for an over-the-counter medication,” said Tech. Sgt. Kevin Kramer, 21st MDS support flight chief. “The program is intended to save time and money across the board. We saw Peterson was using it and we thought ‘why are we not doing this?’”

To be eligible, an Airman must be active-duty, a dependent or a retiree medically enrolled at Schriever or Peterson Air Force Base. The program prohibits Airmen who are on flying status, Personnel Reliability Program Status, Arming and Use of Force, pregnant, breastfeeding or tasked for deployment.

Those who meet the requirements must then fill out a form providing basic information for recordkeeping with their medical provider and help assess their situation.

 They can proceed to choose up to three medications from a preselected list of approximately 40.

Airmen are limited to three OTC medications per month.

The medications can only be used by those who receive them, and are segmented into age categories ranging from two and up. These measures are in place to prevent abuse of the program.

The OTC program not only helps Airmen who need the medication and want to save money, but also benefits 21st MDS clinic workers by freeing up appointment times.

Capt. Kyle Smith, 21st MDS support flight commander, said he has already provided OTC medication to more than 70 Airmen, and encourages more Airmen to use the program for all its benefits.

“We get a couple people a day right now, and they are appreciative,” Smith said. “It’s a lot easier than driving all over Colorado Springs looking for medication.”

He foresees a strong future for the program, and hopes to further its success.

“We want to continue being there, opening up appointment slots and saving Airmen money,” Smith said. “We’re just here to help.”

Pharmacy hours are 7:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday.

For more information about the program, call the pharmacy at 567-4423.