Striking for Pharmacists not an Option?

You may be asking why you don’t hear of pharmacists striking. For pharmacists, strikes may not be an option. They are the only healthcare providers that keep their doors open in a pandemic and are also patient-facing. A lot of patients result in going to pharmacists after being turned away from other healthcare facilities. How can pharmacists turn them away again?

When other professions strike, for example, doctors and nurses, they cause the pharmacy sector to be overstretched. It ends up adding pressure on those who choose to stay put. If you are looking for pharmaceutical consulting services, contact Rondaxe.  Read on to see the challenges they face in their line of duty and why they don’t strike.

Why Don’t Pharmacists Strike?

For a pharmacist, taking industrial action is not an option due to the professional standards that bind. They wonder how they can justify leaving patients with no medical attention. When other medical providers are on strike, pharmacists feel responsible toward their patients and understand that if they went on strike, they would fuel the frustrations and anger felt by patients.

Pharmacists work in a specific locality for some years and build lasting relationships with the community around them, so they feel they should not let them down.  Not showing up for work implies that they are breaching their contracts for providing pharmaceutical care.

Since the emergence of covid 19, some healthcare workers have kept turning patients down and referred them to the pharmacy using covid 19 as an excuse, increasing pharmacists’ workload.

Being a pharmacist makes them resilient professionals who have to soldier on no matter how stressful their working environment and the increased workload. Those are some reasons why pharmacists can’t consider striking even if their working conditions justify the action.

Challenges Faced by Pharmacists at Work

Pharmacists stove to offer the most efficient patient care services and medication decisions. While at it, they encounter various technical and resource issues like other professionals. Their challenges include:

Demand for Multitasking

Pharmacists have become busier than ever. Daily, they have to juggle between dispensing drugs, patient safety screening, expanded renal dosing, medication therapy management, and other tasks. It is very overwhelming to add all those responsibilities to spending a lot of time looking for trustworthy information on the drugs they sell at the point of care.

Increasing Specialty Medications

Since the 1990s, there has been an increased number of specialty medications sold in the market, exceeding 1200%, according to a report by pharmacy times. The new medicine offers new hope to the patients but is usually expensive.

Such drugs need prior authorization or exchange of detailed clinical knowledge between the specialty pharmacists and the prescribers. With the increase in these medications, there is a high demand for information on the latest drugs and the materials that should educate the patients.

Too Many Disparate Resources

Nowadays, it has become challenging to come across trustworthy, centralized evidence-based resources for information on medication and drug interactions. As an alternative, pharmacists mostly have to sieve through different tools, books, and other materials, looking for the medical data they need.

With the increase in complexity and advancement of options when it comes to medication, there is an enhanced need for a single trustworthy digital resource that has a proven track record trusted in the industry.

The Human and Financial Cost of Medical Errors

According to the world health organization, medical errors are too common worldwide. They have an associated cost of $42 billion. Most pharmacists report working 12-14 hours in their shifts. Although that is strenuous, they need to know that it is essential to have access to accurate information to keep errors and adverse patient outcomes at bay.

Outdated Information Across Databases

Pharmacists must keep the most recent evidence-based medicine interaction knowledge in mind to give their patients accurate and safe prescription recommendations. The resources available are mostly not in tabs with the newly released drugs, the recent changes in medication, and contraindication, which risks patients’ safety.

Awareness of Specific Patient Population Needs

Gender, age, and a given patient’s substance abuse history are essential when it is time for prescriptions. A pharmacist must understand how to negotiate nuanced interactions while providing supporting resources.

For instance, they should be efficient in advising the patients on the timing of doses and screening the patients misusing opioids. Pharmacists should be able to access a single drug information database to reduce patient adverse events and save time.

Pharmacists Burnout

Burnout is chronic stress in the workplace that has not been successfully managed, according to the world health organization. In a study conducted by the American pharmacist association in 2022, about 75% of practicing pharmacists suffer from burnout.  When pharmacists have burnout, it gets detrimental on various levels.

For instance, burnout drives good talent away, it gets tougher to fill open positions, and the quality of care that pharmacists give patients goes down. Immensely. Pharmacists struggling with burnout can make detrimental mistakes that compromise the health and safety of the patients and cost the pharmacy money.

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