Retail staff pharmacists typically work within pharmacies inside grocery chains, department stores, and larger drug outlets. They are responsible for helping patients fill prescriptions, providing advice and guidance on proper administration of medicines and drugs, and watching for any potential difficulties with particular medications. Many of these pharmacies also offer services like blood pressure screenings and flu shots, and retail staff pharmacists may assist in these areas, as well.
Typically, the main role of these pharmacists is to fill prescriptions. They examine the prescriptions written by licensed medical professionals and then carefully measure the proper amount or dosage of the medication in the script. The pharmacist will also check the patient's existing records and work with him/her to determine if the prescription has any complications with any other medications being taken. Even if no problems exist, the retail staff pharmacist will inform the patient of any potential problems, even regarding items like over-the-counter drugs or vitamins.
Retail staff pharmacists may also help manage a team of assistants within the retail pharmacy in order to supervise and ensure proper drug storage and labeling at all times. They also keep inventory and reconcile certain drug stocks on hand every day and, if required by law or company regulations, log these findings, as well. Finally, retail staff pharmacists interact with patients and may provide recommendations for them to take to their doctors or clinicians about easing any difficulties they may have with current medications or finding more effective solutions to these issues.
Aspiring retail staff pharmacists should graduate from an accredited pharmacological college program and hold all required certifications and licenses to work within the fields and jurisdictions of their employers. They typically work mornings, afternoons, and evenings, but some 24-hour stores also require an overnight person in this position. Pharmacists in this specialty normally spend most of their days standing or walking.
Retail Staff Pharmacist Tasks
Educate patient on medication use, storage and side effects.
Solicit information from patients regarding past and current medication to prevent drug interactions.
May collaborate with other health care professionals to plan, monitor, review and evaluate patient effectiveness.
Analyze prescribing trends to monitor patient compliance and to prevent excessive usage or harmful interactions.
Dispense and review prescriptions to ensure accuracy, and compliance with professional, state and federal regulatory requirements.