The state and a group representing Illinois pharmacists hope a new pilot program will allow investigators to focus more attention on bigger public health concerns than on minor infractions.
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation announced a six-month Pharmacy Citation System Pilot Program Monday.
Department spokesman Terry Horstman said is meant to focus disciplinary actions on major infractions, instead of minor ones like having food or drinks in undesignated areas or not properly displaying a pharmacy license.
“For instances like that, we certainly don’t want to force pharmacies to spend valuable resources for them and the state in going through the formal disciplinary process,” Horstman said.
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The program won’t affect pharmacy clients at all, according to Illinois Pharmacy Association Executive Director Garth Reynolds, but it will help the state’s investigators cover more important ground.
“The public is still being protected by the investigators of the State Board of Pharmacy, and this should actually help them get out to more pharmacies in a timely fashion,” Reynolds said.
Reynolds said the program will allow the state’s pharmacists and technicians to focus more on serving their clients than dealing with minor disciplinary actions.
Reynolds equates the minor violation citations to minor traffic tickets, a characterization IDFPR spokesman Terry Horstman agrees with.
“It will allow our investigators to spend more time in the field and on more substantive matters that pose a greater risk to the public at large,” Horstman said.
Horstman said the true cost savings for taxpayers won’t be known until after the state reviews the program in August.