About eight years ago, I represented Pharmacists Planning Services Inc (“PPSI”) (led by the late Fred Mayer) in front of the Board of Pharmacy regarding medication errors and working conditions of the pharmacists.

Fred was advocating for the reduction of errors due to difficult working conditions of the pharmacists employed by chain drug stores. We prepared and drafted a regulation  prohibiting chain stores of imposing stringent requirements on the minimum amount of prescriptions to be filled per day. Our survey showed that many pharmacists were deprived of bonuses or even demoted if they did not fill their weekly quota. We presented the case to the Board, which decided not to act on this issue at the time.

And now – almost ten years later – the Board is commencing its own investigation into these practices. It is conducting a workforce survey to determine if working conditions in pharmacies may contribute to medication errors. The survey is anonymous. If you feel like the working conditions in your pharmacy are likely to trigger errors (e.g. you are required to work at a high pace, you do not have enough ancillary staff, etc.), I strongly encourage you to fill out the Board’s survey (available on its website) or contact the Board to participate in this survey.

I would like to think that we have planted a seed with Fred and his legacy will live on.