For those not keeping up with the times, there is a major drug shortage crisis especially with some cancer or anesthetic medications. Here is the best part. Government rules for storage and safety have forced some pharmacists to throw away these lifesaving meds. Here is what one wimp, er, pharmacist said:
“I’d never want to take a chance with not following the rules,” said Alan K. Knudsen, director of pharmacy legal services for Shands HealthCare at the University of Florida in Gainesville. “I wish I didn’t have to throw it out.”
Thankfully, others are pushing back in the interest of patient care, as long as they have strong scientific evidence that the drugs are still safe. Sometimes the directions on the drug have not been updated due to the cost to get the FDA approval. So pharmacists can be lemmings by following the Medicare regulations that require them to follow only the manufacturers’ package instructions for storage and use of medication (even when it’s not current) or take a stand, when it is safe, and help out patients. The ones that do stand up should be celebrated as heroes. That is until the morons at the Joint Commission come in and claim that these hospitals have violated storage and stability rules therefore face CMS fines or other sanctions. Then the administrators will force them to follow the unproven rules in order to get a nice, pretty score.