Letter to the Pharmacy Profession and What I am asking for.
This letter is addressed to my profession of pharmacy.
In 2019, 148 million narcotics were stolen by hospital staff, that number only reflects hospitals with Protenus AI software. That only included hospitals who reported the theft. With a doctorate degree in pharmacy, 9 years of schooling including Oxford University; I was fired in an email for reporting theft, the very thing I was legally responsible for.
I want you (the pharmacy profession) to know I am confused and I am grieved. I was sold on the lie; that as a pharmacist I would be one of the most trusted medical professionals. I was told during school I was obtaining something noble and just. I was told that FEW had the honor to pursue this career path. I was told that as a pharmacist WE ARE THE LAST STOP before the drugs hit the patients. I was told IT IS MY LEGAL and ETHICAL DUTY to be that last stop and to always double check to protect my patients. I am confused and I am grieved because this is just not the case in pharmacy practice today. I have contacted the Board of Pharmacy, Nursing Board, Medical Board, DEA, Health and Human Services, Joint Commission, State Health Department Services, DPS, and politicians on behalf of my patients. I have risked everything to do my job and protect myself from instances of theft while my patients fought to live.
I am greatly confused by the practice of pharmacy and the hypocrisy of it. Why is it in retail pharmacy I must anxiously research the patient’s fill history to ensure they are not doctor shopping or pharmacy shopping? Why is it in retail I must meticulously check every detail written down on the script or the pharmacy can be fined? Yet the profession of pharmacy allows hospitals to cook the narcotic books? Why is it that small independent retail pharmacies suffer these fines but major hospitals can loose liters of Fentanyl and 600 milliliters of Versed because of nursing with no recourse? I am confused why we have a state prescription-monitoring program yet continue to allow the streets of our nation to be littered with drug addicts.
I am confused why drug addicts received free needles and not my diabetic patients. Both deserve the right to clean needles. I am so confused by so many things and all of them stem from my chosen profession of pharmacy.
Can we be a just profession and profit on death? Why is our medicine in America so much more expensive? Hospitals loose and forget to document narcotics every day while retail pharmacies do monthly sometimes weekly narcotic audits? Are we (the pharmacy practice) so foolish to think that the fentanyl on street is entirely foreign supply? Where did 148 million stolen narcotics go?
What I am asking for:
I am asking for these laws and changes as well. It is not all inclusive. But it is a start to prevent further theft and prevent further patient harm.
● All medication drips must have 2 witnesses to sign off on the medication
● Drips should also require pharmacy approval to curtail diversion opportunities
● All narcotics administered and wasted must be documented accurately by all units of the hospital by all members of the healthcare team
● Employment of Pharmacists within the DEA, Medical Board, Texas Board of Nursing and State Health Department
● Requiring board pharmacists work actively in profession so that they are abreast of the current healthcare world
● Sending pharmacists to do board inspections and investigations
● All DEA records kept a minimum of 10 years
● Protocols of hospitals posted publicly online like speed limits signs are posted on the road
● Requiring error prevention reports from hospital be made public so as to increase and encourage compliance and prevention of harm
● Every hospital has a narcotic diversion committee
● Narcotic Diversion Software must be installed in all hospitals
● DEA , Medical Board, TBOP, and TBON enforces safeguards needed to prevent diversion and publishes what hospitals have narcotic diversion software
● Increase counseling for addicted health care workers
● Increase counseling for whistleblowers
● Increase naloxone throughout society until we can curb addiction- life long treatment process
● Increase church involvement of addiction – this is prostitution of the soul
● Abolishing the ability to terminate healthcare workers at-will
● Requiring a medical board panel before termination of health care workers – must be made up of general public
● Abolishment of arbitration
● Black-listing of whistleblowers should be punishable by law and fine