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Pharmacy Allies

I wanted to do something a little different today. The past year of running this site and the corresponding social media pages have brought so many wonderful people into my life, many of whom run their own pages and groups or organizations. All of those folks deserve every bit of recognition they can get for the work they do for pharmacy and our patients. In one way or another we are all working towards the same goals, but for today I want to take a moment to recognize some really dedicated, passionate people and bring your attention to what they are doing.

In no particular order:

Change Pharmacy brought you the widely shared petition that currently has over 22,000 signatures. It is focused on accreditation reform. They didn't stop there, but went on to perform the National Pharmacy Safety Survey with some results visible here.

The Pharmacist Activist is a free monthly newsletter written by Dr. Daniel A. Hussar, Dean Emeritus and Remington Professor Emeritus of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, University of the Sciences. Each month he provides an editorial on a topic that is important for the profession of pharmacy, as well as a review of a new drug that includes a comparison of the new drug with previously marketed drugs that are most similar in activity, and a New Drug Comparison Rating (NDCR) for the new drug. Dr. Hussar often comments on the atrocious conditions in chain pharmacies and has anonymously published many comments from practicing community pharmacists.

Pharmacist Guild is both a Facebook Group and Page that ran a #MAILIT campaign in 2019 which encouraged pharmacists to send letters to regulatory bodies in their states. They also post current events and helped share the National Pharmacy Representation Survey.

Pharmacists United for Truth and Transparency, PUTT, @truthrx - whatever name you know them by, these folks are the loudest national voice out there when it comes to PBM reform (one of, if not THE root cause of all pharmacy issues) and they work tirelessly to bring fair competition to the marketplace and preserve the ability of us pharmacists to practice independently, which as you know is at an all-time difficulty level. PUTT has state-level organizations in several states - check to see if yours is one of them!

PSSNY - Pharmacist's Society of the State of New York PSSNY is one of the most vocal state-level organizations in the fight against PBM practices. They have some amazingly detailed resources available on their page, some of which I directly used in my article on PBMs, such as this document containing an explanation of how spread pricing has affected New York Medicaid Managed Care and this very detailed investigative report from the New York State Senate's Committee on Investigations and Government Operations, chaired by Senator James Skoufis.

Another great state level organization, WAPCC is unique in that it is an association not just of pharmacy professionals, but includes any "concerned citizens" as well. Per their website, " WAPCC is a not for profit organization that provides a voice for pharmacy professionals and private citizens of Washington State to promote the highest standard of care in the pharmacy profession centered on patient safety and health through education and awareness." They also send out current pharmacy events updates via their blog page.

This one probably needs no introduction, but definitely deserves the recognition as one of the most entertaining and consistent voices in advocating for real, meaningful changes to pharmacy practice rather than wasting time on ineffective or straight up silly stuff. They'll tell you all about it too, no holds barred. I owe them many laughs.

A Facebook page run by some of our neighbors to the north, intended, much like my site, to unite pharmacists the world over to take back our profession.

If you haven't heard of Loretta Boesing, hang on to your hats. She's one of the most moving patient advocates active in the fight against loss of patient choice. She speaks out against forced mail-order and other PBM shenanigans and abuses via the non-profit she formed after her son's life was endangered by a mail-order mandate from her insurer. You can see the video of her speech to Florida's BoP here (make sure to scroll down just a bit). Visit her non-profit's homepage to see the three petitions she's working on. You can also find her on Twitter: @BoesingLoretta

Not a pharmacy group, per se, but another ally in the fight for patients' rights. The physicians at Community Oncology Alliance are perfectly positioned to compile the PBM horror stories I alluded to in my PBM article "You don't have to, but you should." Note: There are FIVE volumes to date.

This is not an all-inclusive list of the people out there doing great work, because there are WAY more. This just a spotlight on those non-profit organizations and community pages who have actively engaged with me in one way or another and does not include for-profit businesses, which also often do great work for patients and the profession (and I may consider spotlighting some of them at a later date). I hope this posting brings my followers to other sources of hope and brings more attention to some really great advocates and activists.

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