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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Pharmacy Fundamentals

Posted by on April 11 at 17:17 PM

Going to be breaking a story in tomorrow’s paper (and on-line this afternoon) about Cedar River Clinics—a network of abortion, birth control, and reproductive health clinics. They have filed a formal complaint with the state Dept. of Health about pharmacists refusing to honor prescriptions for Cedar River’s clients.

Cedar River’s complaint is timely because the Washington State Board of Pharmacy is currently considering writing rules that could allow pharmacists to refuse to fill prescriptions for things like emergency contraception if they have moral objections.

If that possibility concerns you—you should attend the pharmacy board’s public hearing on Wednesday April 19 in Tumwater. (That’s in Thurston County a little south of Olympia.) It’s at 9:00am in the Labor & Industries Auditorium, 7273 Linderson Way SW.

Planned Parenthood forwarded a map to me that shows spots around the state where pharamacists have refused to fill prescriptions—including Seattle. The map also explains the incidents. I didn’t have room to put the map in the paper. Check it out.

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The charges in the article are extremely serious. If a pharmacist refused to fill an antibiotic prescription at Swedish, then there are some serious patient safety issues involved and the Dept of Heatlh should explore the possibility of a citation.
Pharmacies like that tend to serve communities that have a hard time purchasing medication from retail pharmacies and for these pharmcies of last resort to refuse something as critical as an anti-sepsis drug means a lot. Several people shold lose their jobs over this and the pharmacy should be fined.

No shit. I couldn't believe this wasn't mentioned more in the article - the pharmacist wasn't refusing to fill Plan B, or contraception, but ANTIBIOTICS - wtf??? Not that it is right to refuse to fill any of the stuff I mentioned, but this is the first case where I have heard of someone refusing to fill a drug which they don't object to, because of the circumstances under which they presume the patient requires it. Sorry, but that's fucking nuts.

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