August 19, 2008
Britain: pharmacies to offer “free medicine checks during the holy month of Islam to make sure Muslim customers’ health is not affected if they stop eating between sunrise and sunset”
Such medicinal altruism! — especially compared to the “treatment” these aspiring Muslim physicians (or these) would, in the name of “cultural understanding” and “sensitivity,” offer the “other.” “Co-operative Pharmacy to give Muslims medicine help during Ramadan,” by Martin Beckford for the Telegraph, August 19:
Fasting Muslims are to be offered special help by a high street chain of chemists during Ramadan.
The Co-operative Pharmacy is offering free “medicine checks” during the holy month of Islam to make sure Muslim customers’ health is not affected if they stop eating between sunrise and sunset.
For the first time, the chain has specially trained pharmacists at 40 branches in areas where there are large numbers of Muslims to teach them how fasting can affect the effectiveness of drugs.
It is the latest sign of how more and more British companies are developing the services they offer to cater to the needs of the country’s two million-strong Muslim population.
Earlier this week it emerged that drivers can now buy car insurance that is compliant with Islamic law, while a growing number of high street banks are offering home loans that do not break sharia rules on lending.
“We appreciate the importance of cultural understanding and sensitivity when discussing the implications on health care of people’s religious beliefs,” said Adrian Price, The Co-operative Pharmacy’s Professional Practice Manager.
“We’re not making assumptions about how Muslim patients might act, but we strongly recommend they talk to their pharmacist.”
It is one of the five pillars of Islam that Muslims should fast between sunrise and sundown during Ramadan.
This year the holy month begins at the start of September, which means there are more daylight fasting hours than if it fell later in the year as it has done recently.
Due to the fact that Islam follows a lunar calendar (remember the hilal) and so Ramadan randomly appears throughout the year — summer months being particularly difficult, as the daylight lasts much longer.
As a result, the Co-op is warning that Muslims who change the times at which they take their medication or stop taking it with meals could damage its effectiveness.