Board of Pharmacy to Enforce “No Pharmacist Left Alone” Law
Sacramento, CA – After hearing from member pharmacists with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council, the California Board of Pharmacy voted Wednesday to write regulations to help enforce SB 1442 (Wiener), the No Pharmacist Left Alone Law. The vote on the petition brought forward by UFCW will help prevent large retail stores from evading the 2018 law that protects patients by requiring stores to make a staff member available to help pharmacists at their request. The Board of Pharmacy supported the UFCW bill intended to help pharmacists focus on their number one priority – protecting the public health.
“UFCW pharmacists are encouraged that the Board of Pharmacy listened to us and took action to protect the patients we serve by strengthening enforcement of SB 1442,” said Seung Oh, a pharmacist and member of UFCW. “Consistent enforcement is necessary to prevent large retail stores from evading the law’s purpose – to ensure pharmacists have the support necessary to focus on our core mission of keeping patients safe.”
SB 1442 was passed in response to chronic understaffing of retail pharmacies that often led pharmacists to work alone for hours on end, compromising patient safety. Without enforcement of the law, retail stores continue to demand pharmacists perform multiple tasks, from dispensing medication to patients, to ringing up prescriptions and other store items, to clean the pharmacy bathrooms and taking out the trash.
The Board of Pharmacy will now proceed through the formal rulemaking process where they will write regulations clarifying definitions in the law to strengthen enforcement in California’s large retail pharmacies.
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UFCW Western States Council
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 13, 2019
Contact: Jenna Thompson, 916.444.7280