If you are concerned about the way a pharmacist practices, you may wish to take one or more of the following steps:
Talk with the pharmacist about your concerns, for in most cases she/he will want to know that you are dissatisfied with the type of service received.
Talk with the pharmacy manager about your situation, for they, too, want satisfied patients who will recommend their services.
If you are unable to receive satisfaction from the above efforts or if you feel it is inappropriate to do (1) and/or (2) above, call the Minnesota Board of pharmacy at (651) 201-2825 to discuss your concerns. If the Board is able to be of assistance, you will receive complaint forms. To initiate a formal review, complete the forms, and return the packet to the Board.
The Board can only take action against a pharmacist's or pharmacy license. It can't help you recover money from a pharmacist or pharmacy. The board can only take action against pharmacists or pharmacies. It can't help you with problems regarding any other health care professional such as physicians or nurses. The Board can't help you with any billing or collection problems.
Yes. The Board's complaint review process actually begins when the Board receives your completed complaint. By completing a form you are providing the documentation the Board's staff needs to begin its review.
First, the Board's staff gathers information from a variety of sources, starting with the information you include in your complaint. The staff will gather records, collect data and may interview those involved, You may be asked to sign a release of information form to allow the Board to obtain your records. Signing this release will speed the handling of your complaint. If it is appropriate, the staff will also obtain a response from the pharmacist involved. When the information gathering is completed, the Board's Committee on Professional Standards will review the facts and decide whether to take action against the pharmacist involved.
The Board can take a variety of actions: It can limit, suspend or revoke a pharmacy's license to provide pharmacy services in Minnesota. It can limit, suspend or revoke a pharmacist's license to practice pharmacy in Minnesota. It can order a pharmacy or pharmacist to pay civil penalties and to pay all court and investigative costs incurred during the complaint review process. It can order pharmacists to take more training. It can order pharmacists to enroll in appropriate treatment programs. It can issue a written reprimand.
During the review process, the board will protect your identity, unless you consent to have it disclosed. Disclosing your identity can, however, assist the board in investigating your complaint, since pharmacists and pharmacies must respond to specific complaints rather than to general accusations.
The Board receives some complaints that do not lead to action against a pharmacist or pharmacy. The Board cannot take action against a pharmacist or pharmacy unless there is sufficient evidence to show that the pharmacist or pharmacy violated Minnesota's Pharmacy Practice Act. The Board must thoroughly review each complaint before it takes any action.
The Board of Pharmacy has nine members including six pharmacists and three members of the general public, all appointed by the Governor. The Board is supported by a professional staff. The staff and the Board work closely with attorneys from the Minnesota Attorney General's Office when reviewing complaints against pharmacists or pharmacies. Pharmacists and pharmacies under investigation are required, by law, to cooperate with the Board and its staff.