[quote="mike14620, post:31, topic:189982"]
I'm a pharmacist in the US, and this is by no means a unique situation here and, I would assume, abroad. I've heard some say that you "shouldn't be a pharmacist" if you don't want to dispense certain medications. Others suggest that you should find a job in pharmacy where you don't dispense those drugs to which you object (for example, nursing homes, parts of the pharmaceutical industry, etc).
However, to me, seeing through these arguments, I see them essentially saying, "If you don't have the same beliefs as me, you shouldn't be a pharmacist." The desire for homogeneity is astounding.
I respect the right of the pharmacist to refuse to sell. However, I also recognize the rights of businesses to not hire someone whose beliefs would interfere with the tasks that their job requires. This applies to pharmacies as well. If Jim's Corner Drug wants to sell contraceptives, and wants every pharmacist who works there to sell them, I have no objection to the employer dictating that at the time of employment. Similarly, I believe that a pharmacist who has an objection to contraceptives should be up front about their objections when interviewing.
On the other hand, I also think private businesses have the right to stock or not stock products. If a pharmacy decides it doesn't want to carry contraceptives, Plan B, condoms, or Lipitor, that is within their rights as well. The government has no right to dictate that a pharmacy must stock Plan B any more than it has the right to tell a hardware store it must stock hammers. I've worked in a couple of different pharmacies. All of them carry contraception. Only one carries Plan B. The others never sell it, not because of moral objections, but because their patient population doesn't ask for it.
I dispense oral contraceptives on a regular basis. There are many legitimate non-contraceptive uses for hormonal "birth control" pills. Often, the pharmacist is unable to determine the reason for use, and often they have multiple reasons.
Furthermore, refusing to dispense does little to actually impact patient choices. It will generally make someone angry, and they will just storm out, cross the street, and get it filled somewhere else. You burn a bridge and lose the ability to influence that patient by outright refusing to fill the prescription.
If you want to get someone to not take birth control, a better option is to actually tell them the risks (and benefits) of birth control, and make them aware of alternatives, while showing that you are willing to let them make the choice. The reality is that they will fill that prescription if they want to fill it. Sending them somewhere else just means they will fill it without getting the full-service concern and education that a pharmacist can provide if they take the time.
I'm sure that some call that aiding and abetting, but when you can see another pharmacy out the window, it is hard to say you have really done anything for the pro-life cause if you just say no and alienate that person. I can sleep better at night knowing that my patients get the full story to make their decision, rather than the "sign here to waive counseling" I know my neighbors will give them.
This is one of the most sensible posts I have heard tonight. Thank You! :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup: