Education And License
A druggist must ordinarily be a graduate of an accredited pharmacy school and be of sound moral character. In some instances, he or she might be required to pass a written qualifying examination. An individual who conforms to all the requisite qualifications cannot be refused a license arbitrarily.
An individual who is licensed in one state does not have the authority to dispense drugs in other states, except where one state consents to recognize a license that has been issued in another state. A license might have to be periodically renewed and can be revoked or suspended for misconduct, such as the selling of an unlabeled drug, the unauthorized substitution of a cheaper for a more expensive drug, or the sale of prescription drugs to an individual who does not have a valid prescription.
Any state board decision to grant, revoke, or suspend a license is a proper subject for court review. A judge has the power to modify the decision of the board in the event that it is either ARBITRARY or unsupported by evidence.
Any business or individual engaged in handling drugs has a legal obligation to exercise proper care.
A druggist does not have the duty to fill every prescription that is presented, and he or she is not permitted to fill a prescription that appears to be a sham. A druggist who refuses to fill a prescription must return such prescription to the customer. The pharmacist is not permitted to retain it, for example, merely because money is owed by the customer.
Pharmacists are required to maintain written records of the drugs they sell and must allow the proper state officials to inspect such records. It is not ordinarily unlawful for a pharmacist to fill a prescription on the direction of a doctor who telephones it in, even if the doctor does not subsequently send a written authorization. The pharmacist, however, is required to make a written record at the time the prescription is filled.
Although a pharmacist is not required to know everything possible about drugs, he or she is required to be as skilled as most others in the profession. Additionally, a pharmacist owes customers a high degree of care in the service given to them, and they may properly make the assumption that the drugs that they are sold are suitable for the use that he or she recommends. Customers can rely upon any specific claims that the pharmacist makes for the drugs.