RX ALERT: Requirements for furnishing and dispensing drugs during a declared state of emergency

CPhA would like to remind pharmacists about the Board of Pharmacy’s requirements for furnishing prescription drugs in a declared state of emergency.

Under Business and Professions Code 4062, a pharmacist may, in good faith, furnish dangerous drugs and devices without a prescription as long as:

  • It’s in reasonable quantities.
  • There is a record containing the date, name and address of the person whom the drug or device is being dispensed to.
  • There is a record of the name, strength and quantity of the drug or device.
  • The pharmacist is to inform the patient’s attending physician as soon as possible of the drug or device dispensed.

Additionally, a pharmacist may perform an emergency refill of a prescription if, in the pharmacist’s professional judgement and the inability of a prescriber’s authorization to refill, the failure to refill the prescription will interrupt the patient’s ongoing care and have a significant adverse effect on the patient’s well-being. This follows a pharmacist’s every reasonable effort to contact the prescriber prior to issuing the refill, including proper documentation.

The steps that a pharmacist must perform after the refill has been issued are:

  • Inform the patient that the refill has been issued.
  • Inform the prescriber, within a reasonable time-frame, of any refill has been issued.

CPhA would also like to emphasize that these requirements are for all drugs, including prescription opioids. CPhA would remind pharmacists to do appropriate consultations with patients, especially when furnishing opioids.

Our strength in numbers makes us louder and stronger. Encourage your non-member pharmacy owner colleagues to help us protect pharmacists’ rights when dealing with PBMs by becoming a CPhA member!