Pharmacist group plots strategies for dealing with future workforce challenges

Here’s an association — the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists — that’s making a serious effort to take a long-term view of challenges its profession faces in the future. Bravo! The association has come up with a long-range “vision” document covering the following critical issues:

  • Credentialing
  • Residency training
  • Teamwork within the pharmacy function and the entire patient care process
  • Role and credentials of pharmacy technicians
  • Experiential learning requirements
  • Expanded and specialized areas of pharmacy practice
  • Role of automation and technology

And a second task force, on “pharmacy’s changing demographics,” made long-term recommendations for coping with workforce trends such as a shortage of pharmacists and demands for better work-life balance, as well as “generational differences, a changing gender mix, and ethnic and racial diversity.” (Notably, “the task force was composed of a diverse group that included health-system pharmacists, a nurse, a physician as well as a futurist and a sociologist.”)

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