Case scenario

Mr Chin, a 65-year-old male, returns to your pharmacy with a repeat for cefaclor 375 mg MR tablets; the original prescription was dispensed 3 months ago. Mr Chin looks unwell. He has a cough, is having trouble breathing and he tells you he has a fever and chills. He is a smoker (10–15 cigarettes/day) and his past medical history includes chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), hypertension, hyperlipidaemia and gastro-oesophageal reflux disease. His current medicines are perindopril, atorvastatin, Trelegy Ellipta and pantoprazole. He has no known allergies. He tried to see his GP today but wasn’t able to make an appointment.

You feel it is inappropriate to dispense the cefaclor prescription from 3 months ago and call Mr Chin’s doctor to advise him of your concerns. The doctor tells you he can see Mr Chin today.

Learning objectives

After reading this article, pharmacists should be able to:

  • Define community-acquired pneumonia
  • Identify signs and symptoms of bacterial pneumonia infection
  • Discuss the treatment of pneumonia
  • Discuss how a pharmacist can assist a patient with pneumonia.

Competency standards (2016) addressed: 1.1, 1.3, 1.5, 2.3, 2.4, 3.2

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Introduction

Pneumonia is the second leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide.1 In 2018, pneumonia was the 12th leading cause of death in Australia.2 The introduction of Haemophilus influenzae B and multivalent pneumococcal vaccines has significantly reduced the overall b

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