Pharmacy Responds to the AMA Position
The AMA statement issued in response to the SOTU’s test to treat plan is not entirely unexpected. However, the pharmacy industry is united in its position when it comes to test and treat: this is a good start, but go bigger! Expand the prescriptive authority to pharmacists. Not only is this is vital to underserved communities where Americans have access to a pharmacy but not a physician, but with time-sensitive COVID-19 antivirals, quick action is key. Whose doors have stayed open during this pandemic, providing vaccines, COVID-19 tests and masks to the public? Pharmacies. Who do Americans turn to for easily accessible care? Pharmacies.
“I’m concerned to see the AMA so adamantly opposing a measure that would limit access to critical treatments for COVID-19. The AMA’s primary argument is around medical complexity, but there’s really nothing to argue: We agree that pharmacists are not qualified for complex medical decision making. But that’s not what is on the table here. What’s on the table is allowing pharmacists to follow straightforward, protocol-based medical decision-making guidelines which would expand access to this time-sensitive treatment to millions more Americans. And when the medical decision making is more complex, the pharmacist would refer the patient to a physician. So, what are we arguing about? Let’s do this!”
—David Pope, PharmD, CDE
Chief Innovation Officer, OmniSYS