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May 13, 1974

The Modern Pharmacist

Author Affiliations

Cincinnati General Hospital Cincinnati

JAMA. 1974;228(7):829. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230320017017

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To the Editor.—  The recent article by Mazzullo et al (227:929, 1974) on the need for improved prescribing habits deserves comment. One of the most important aspects was overlooked, namely the role of the practicing pharmacist.The authors state that today's prescriptions require "only that the physician order and that the pharmacist fill from shelves stocked with manufactured drugs." With regard to the pharmacist, this is not altogether true. Recently, the Washington state legislature ruled that all Rx legend drugs dispensed from a pharmacy be personally handed to the patient by a registered pharmacist, and that in addition to the usual labeled directions, the pharmacist must verbally explain to the patient what the directions mean and provide any necessary information that the patient should be aware of. In May of last year, a Superior Court in New Jersey upheld a decision requiring pharmacists in that state to initiate and utilize