Personalized Medicine and The Pharmacist

Introspective View on the Pharmacy Profession: Now Moving Forward

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     To the general public, pharmacy practice may seem to centre primarily on dispensing medications with minimal patient interaction; a profession that hides behind the little white counter more than arms reach away – impersonal. However this is grossly untrue, reflecting only a small portion of the pharmacists’ role.

     Whilst some aspects of the traditional roles of pharmacists are being transposed to licensed pharmacy technicians, pharmacists are now able to focus more on patient drug counseling and medication management.

     Pharmacists are in a unique position precariously situated between public duty and private enterprise. In evaluating the fundamental components of the pharmacy profession… Pharmacist compensation is a major weakness; an inconsistent component of our public healthcare model. Unlike physicians who are paid per patient visit, pharmacists are currently paid per prescription. This means that pharmacists are not appropriately compensated for time, knowledge and expertise spent on quality patient counseling on prescription, over-the-counter medications, health products and related concerns).

     Pharmacists are the gatekeepers to accessing medicines, the connection between various health professionals (include doctors, all prescribers) whereby issues surrounding proper medication use, safety and effectiveness are addressed. As drug specialists, pharmacists are unique in managing patient health alongside fellow healthcare professionals. Patients are encouraged to take an active role in their health management and pharmacists are in a key position to aid this dynamic relationship.

     As an easily accessible information source, pharmacists are often torn between providing quality patient care and compensation reflective of pharmacy practice.

     As the population ages, demands on pharmaceutical services will increase inevitably.  Without reflective pharmacist compensation, the current pharmacy business model will not be able to sustain quality patient care to the masses.

Written by Eileen Song, Margaret Chan
Group 9

Written by Eileen

January 31st, 2012 at 5:13 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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