How Pharmacists Can Have Their Voices Heard in Public Policy

We have to have this one voice that we've been talking about, this one consistent message.

Christine Lee-Wilson, Owner of Professional Pharmacy MD, and Nimesh Jhaveri, President, Community Pharmacy and Health, spoke to Pharmacy Times about public policy and advocacy in pharmacy.

Christine Lee-Wilson: There are many ways pharmacists can have their voices heard. The first thing is to get involved in your state association, to join [National Community Pharmacists Association] NCPA, to join [American Pharmacists Association] APhA —first 3 items to check off your list. After that, you need to figure out who are the committee members and are running those committees, and join those committees and find out what assistance they need. The lowest hanging fruit is—your delegates and Senators and policymakers are real people, and so, they take medications. They are in your pharmacy all of the time. Capitalize on that, talk to them, let them know your issues. Do not say everything is great and everything is good, because we're sending them conflicting messages. If the 1 owner said, “Oh, everything is good, we're fine,” and then the other owner goes to testify, and then we're trying to get things passed. We have to have this one voice that we've been talking about this one consistent message. I really would just ask that if they do nothing else, just talk to the people that walk in your pharmacy every day because it's a web of individuals, and you have so much knowledge and insight to give them to make the changes that we need to change.