Published Online: Friday, February 1, 2008

A new report indicates that pharmacists will expand their role to prescribing medications in at least 6 states in 5 years, according to report author Kalorama Information.

The state of Florida allows some prescribing off an approved list, and many states allow prescription choice from a physician diagnosis. The cost of copays and time spent on physician visits will increase the need for drug decisions to be made at the pharmacist level.

The report, Prescribing Pharmacists, a Decision Maker Emerges, details how pharmacists already have a tremendous impact on drug revenues, and companies that do not incorporate a marketing strategy involving pharmacists will lose advantage in the coming years. The analysis indicates that pharmacists are moving from their role of dispensing medication based on physician instructions, to prescribing based on physician diagnosis, to independent prescribing in some limited situations.

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