Health fair advises parents to keep medicine
out of children’s reach, ensure correct dosages.
With pills for coughs, fever and flu
now coming in different colours
and flavours such as cherry and
grape, it can be easy for children to
mistake them for sweets.
Pharmacists here say they have
seen cases of children being taken to
hospital after swallowing the tablets
by accident, and yesterday urged
parents to keep them out of reach.
This was one of several key messages
of a health fair organised by
the Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore
and North West Community
Held at Woodlands Civic Centre,
the society hopes that the Own
Your Health@North West fair will
encourage everyone to take ownership
of their health.
Ms Esther Ang, a pharmacist
from KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, said that young children
are curious and prone to taking
medications by accident.
The society tried to show how
medicines and sweets can be easily
confused by displaying two similar
gingerbread houses – one made out
of sweets, the other out of pills.
“If placed in common areas, children
might just help themselves to
it because it looks or tastes like Ribena,
for instance,” said Ms Ang.
IT professional Jimmy Chong,
who has three children aged between
six and 12, attended
yesterday’s fair and said that he will
be mindful of storing medicines
“I was quite surprised to find that
some of the medication look like
candy,” said the 43-year-old.
“As parents,wehave to be responsible
and not place the medication
within their reach.”
Aside from keeping pills and medicine
out of easy reach, it is important
to ensure that the dosage is given
Ms Ng Hong Yen, president of the
Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore,
said: “Doses for children are
actually very small so any inaccuracy
in the volume of medicine being
administered can result in a significant
increase on the intended
She added that parents should
use syringes or medicine spoons instead
of teaspoons to administer
drugs to children.
More than 500 people attended
yesterday’s event. The guest of honour
was Mr Khaw Boon Wan, Coordinating
Minister for Infrastructure,
Minister for Transport and adviser
to Sembawang Grassroots Organisas.
Visitors were also taught how to
effectively manage minor ailments
such as cough and flu.