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How chaos at chain pharmacies is putting patients at risk

from By Ellen Gabler at The New York Times

Two bills that would expand a pharmacist's scope of practice for specific conditions (SB 714/HB 389) are moving through Florida Session, but an alarming report from The New York Times suggests that pharmacists are already overwhelmed with workplace-imposed requirements — to the point where medication errors are increasing, and pharmacists themselves are crying for help.

"I am a danger to the public working for CVS," one pharmacist wrote in an anonymous letter to the Texas State Board of Pharmacy in April.

"The amount of busywork we must do while verifying prescriptions is absolutely dangerous," another wrote to the Pennsylvania board in February. "Mistakes are going to be made and the patients are going to be the ones suffering."

"We are afraid to speak up and lose our jobs," one pharmacist wrote anonymously last year in response to a survey by the Missouri Board of Pharmacy. "PLEASE HELP."

Of the nearly 1,000 pharmacists who took (Missouri's) survey, 60% said they "agree" or "strongly agree" that they "feel pressured or intimidated to meet standards or metrics that may interfere with safe patient care." About 60% of respondents worked for retail chains, as opposed to hospitals or independent pharmacies. more

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