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As a public health measure, states have the power to regulate the preparation and dispensing of drugs. They can proscribe the sale of certain substances without a prescription and specifically designate who is permitted to deal in prescription drugs. Statutes govern the procedures that must be observed when drugs are handled, as well as the steps that must be taken for the inspection of drugstores and pharmacy records by agents of the state.

States can properly mandate that pharmacists be licensed, provided the necessary qualifications are not unreasonable. For example, although it would be reasonable for a state to require that pharmacists earn college degrees, it would be unreasonable to require them to be natural-born citizens of the United States. State legislatures have the authority to prohibit any type of improper competition that would tend to lower the service standards.

Druggists must ordinarily be a graduate of an accredited pharmacy school. Because they handle controlled substances, they must also be licensed and registered.

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