Magazine article Drug Topics

How Are Associations Doing? Pharmacists Give Mixed Signals

Magazine article Drug Topics

How Are Associations Doing? Pharmacists Give Mixed Signals

Article excerpt

Are the professional organizations that represent pharmacists meeting their needs? The picture seems mixed, because, even though fewer pharmacists are satisfied with association services today, more are consorting in such organizations than before.

Comparing the two surveys Drug Topics did in 1983 and 1992, fewer pharmacists are happy with their associations now (35%) than at that time (76%). At the same time, outright disappointment with associations has inched up--from 24% in '83 to 27% today. In between the satisfied and dissatisfied in this year's survey is a gulf of pharmacists (38%) who are merely indifferent about their associations.

Of the three types of respondents, hospital pharmacists reported in as being most pleased, with 50% giving their associations a good rating. Chains are most disenchanted, with 41% rating them poorly. Independents, on balance, are more fulfilled than otherwise (34% versus 26%, respectively).

Tracking associations' performance over these past nine years, there are fewer independent and hospital pharmacists today who feel their associations are not meeting their expectations. The same could not be said of chain pharmacists, though: More chain pharmacists are disgruntled with their representative groups this time around than the last time (41% versus 35%).

Supervisory-level pharmacists seem to be more contented with their professional groups than are staff pharmacists. Thus, associations got good grades from 38% of store owners and managers but from only 19% of rank-and-file R.Ph.s. Similarly, 55% of hospital pharmacy directors and their assistants scored their associations highly, as compared with only 30% of staff pharmacists. By sex, there are more malcontents among males than among females in the hospital setting.

So how many pharmacists are members of professional organizations? More pharmacists belong to at least one professional group today than did nine years ago (81% versus 75%). For most, membership is likely to be in a state pharmaceutical association.

Community pharmacists are more likely to join a state group than to join a national one, and more of them participate in a state entity today than before. Whereas only 85% of independents and 68% of chain pharmacists belonged to a state group in '83, today the percentages are 91% and 74%, respectively.

Among hospital pharmacists, however, state societies have lost ground. Only 70% of hospital pharmacists are represented by a state group currently, versus 74% in '83. …

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