Have you ever wondered about who regulates pharmacies? Maybe you have a complaint you would like to make about a pharmacist or about pharmaceutical care that you have received, and you don’t know who to turn to. While you can obviously vocalize your concerns to the manager of the pharmacy, you may also want to know if there is someone else beyond the employees in the store, which you can make your concerns known to.
You may be glad to find out that every state has a Board of Pharmacy that regulates the pharmacy practice of the following:
- pharmacy technicians
- pharmacy interns
- pharmacy exemptees
- community pharmacies
- hospital pharmacies
- mail order pharmacies
- any company that distributes prescription drugs
If you have any concerns about a pharmacist, if the pharmacy violated the law, or if you were affected by some type of pharmacy error, you can file a complaint with your State Board of Pharmacy. The good news is that there is an outlet for you to file your complaint, but the bad news is that most state boards don’t usually have enough manpower to resolve consumer complaints—or at least not in a timely manner.
So What Can You Expect From the Board in the Way of a Resolution to Your Complaint?
If you have filed a complaint regarding the pharmaceutical care you or a loved one has received, the State Board of Pharmacy will evaluate your concern. Depending on the circumstances, an inspector may contact you to ask you additional questions and gather further information about your complaint. Sometimes, you will be advised of the action that was taken and your complaint may be resolved; however, complaints may result in a verbal or written warning and closed without your knowledge.
Unfortunately, many pharmacy boards fail to adequately inspect complaints or even pharmacies for that matter. For example, recent information has been revealed about the North Carolina Board of Pharmacy failing to inspect pharmacies on a regular basis. A state audit found that 35 percent of pharmacies have not been inspected by the board for over four years and about 21 percent of them have not been inspected in at least six years.
While it is great that you can file a complaint with your State Board of Pharmacy, please keep in mind that many complaints are never resolved. Also, remember that the board does not work for you, which is why you should hire a pharmacy malpractice lawyer if you are seeking damages or restitution.
If you or a loved one has been harmed due to pharmacy negligence and you have not received the resolution you would have liked, please call us at 888-526-7616 for a free consultation or to request a free copy of our report, How to Make Pharmacies Pay for Injuries Caused by Medication Errors.