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Regional meeting recap

December 14, 2016

Thank you to everyone who participated in our recent Regional Meetings in Edmonton, Lethbridge, and online! Together with over 100 pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, we explored two main themes impacting pharmacy practice in Alberta; Modernizing Role Statements for Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians, and Pharmacy Working Conditions. 

The topic of modernizing role statements generated rich and thoughtful discussion at all three meetings. It was encouraging to see how many pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, from a variety of different practice settings, openly shared their thoughts on the draft statements and provided valuable suggestions for what should be added, removed, and clarified.

Role statements are important because they contribute to a profession’s identity and purpose within Alberta’s health system. Updating these statements to accurately reflect the current role of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians will provide clearer expectations to the public, registrants, pharmacy owners, and our stakeholders.

We are currently in the process of incorporating feedback from these discussions into the draft role statements, and will post the revised versions on our website early in the new year for further review and comment. At the same time, we will be engaging with other colleges of pharmacy, pharmacy associations, other professions, and the public. Our hope is to have the new role statements approved by council in June of 2017.

The topic of pharmacy workplace conditions also generated lots of good discussion among both pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. The discussion stemmed from the findings of a research study conducted by Dr. Carlo Marra, Dean Faculty of Pharmacy, Memorial University in the spring of 2016. Central to the discussion was the concept of performance targets and quotas. One common sentiment that echoed throughout our discussions was the need to ensure that quotas/targets were aligned with the capacity of the pharmacy team (what is reasonable given resources, time, etc.,) and that patient health outcomes should always be at the core of any quota/target that is developed.

We look forward to continuing the conversation with more pharmacists and pharmacy technicians at our Spring 2017 Regional Meetings which will be announced later in the new year.