Magazine article Drug Topics

R.Ph.S Gaining Ground in Getting Prescriptive Authority

Magazine article Drug Topics

R.Ph.S Gaining Ground in Getting Prescriptive Authority

Article excerpt

The movement to gain limited prescriptive authority for pharmacists is making headway from state to state.

By now, more than half the states are either actively pursuing or have already attained some form of prescriptive authority, according to Diane Ginsburg, clinical assistant professor, University of Texas at Austin, college of pharmacy (see box on page 50).

Speaking at the annual meeting of the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy, held last month in San Francisco, Ginsburg presented a road map for pharmacy associations to consider en route toward this legislative goal. Although the goal is achievable, she said, the path to get there is slippery and fraught with legislative dangers.

Speaking from the experience of her own state-Texas-Ginsburg outlined an approach that calls for a careful use of semantics mixed with plenty of cooperation with other health-care provider organizations, as follows:

In drafting a legislative bill toward this end, keep it short, simple, and as nonthreatening as possible

Educate state legislators regarding the purpose of the bill

Strive to develop a strong coalition among all available pharmacy organizations so that pharmacy speaks with a single voice on this issue

Work to gain the support of physician and nurse organizations. Avoid letting them feel threatened and therefore resistant to the passage of the legislation

Select a highly reputable legislator to introduce the bill

Key to the effort, said Ginsburg, is to use terminology that plays up the collaborative nature of pharmacists taking on a limited form of prescribing authority and downplays any appearance of creating a "turf" struggle. …

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