My Take From the New York Times Article

Rather than republish the original article, I’ll link it below. I wanted to reply to the accusations it presents.

First, never before in my years of pharmacy practice are pharmacies punished for creating working conditions that lead to errors. Frequently now, there is often just a pharmacist on duty. Imagine being the sole person in the pharmacy that is required to do it all. Patients dropping off prescriptions, data entry of new orders, ringing out patients, answering the endless amount of phone calls, and verifying your own work are a recipe for disaster. Logic would assume that one person cannot do it all. Any pharmacy doing more than 30 prescriptions in an hour should have 2 people on staff.

Second, your Board of Pharmacy is inherently married to chain pharmacies. In Michigan, almost every professional member works for one pharmacy chain. They tend to rubber stamp everything chain pharmacies ask.

Last, I believe little in what the National Association of Chain Drug Stores statement provides about causal relationships between pharmacists’ workloads and errors. Could you work 16 hours a day, 4-5 days per week without a break or a lunch and barely any time to use the restroom and not make a mistake? More so if you are doing all the work yourself? Could you evaluate a prescription for correctness and evaluate drug interactions in under 60-seconds? The answer to all of those questions is NO!

Pharmacists should work to become active advocates for their professions. If you don’t like what is going on, run for state legislature or speak to your state legislators. Many of them have coffee hours you can attend on a regular basis.

Reference Article:

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