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Interviews with news makers and discussion of topics important to Southwest Michigan. Subscribe to the podcast through Apple itunes and Google. Segments of interview are heard in WestSouthwest Brief during Morning Edition and All Things Considered

WSW: Prescription Drug Labels That Work for the Visually Imparied

Deirdre Weston-Davis

Deidre Weston-Davis remembers when her blood pressure spiked close to stroke level. She says it was running 230 over 180 and she couldn't understand why. 

The problem was that instead of the medication to control her blood pressure, she was taking her son's allergy medication. Weston-Davis and Faith Meadows, both members of the Kalamazoo Council for the Blind and Visually Impaired, say that's a common problem, and they're trying to help blind and visually impaired people with prescription drug labels.

Options include prescription labels in braille, large print and digital audio labels. Those give the information in audio form. 

Interview with Faith Meadows and Deidre Weston-Davis - web version

Meadows says it's important for visually impaired people to contact their pharmacist about the information on prescription drug labels. Meadows says she prefers the digital audio label developed by the company AccessaMed. She says others may prefer braille, and people known as "high partials," with some vision can use large print labels.  

The American Council for the Blind has been working on the issue on a national basis. Meadows says many blind people, like herself, live alone. Weston-Davis says even having help isn't a guarantee. She says one of her sons did not read her label correctly. Weston-Davis says as a result, she mistakenly took medication that was prescribed for her dog. 

Gordon Evans became WMUK's Content Director in 2019 after more than 20 years as an anchor, host and reporter. A 1990 graduate of Michigan State, he began work at WMUK in 1996.
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