November 14, 2008

Small-town pharmacists defend 1963 ownership law

Small-town pharmacists defend 1963 ownership law

 

By MARVIN BAKER

A pharmacy ownership law that has been in effect 45 years and has been described as outdated by large retailers, will most likely be debated when the 2009 Legislature goes into session in January.

North Dakota remains the only state in the United States requiring in-state licensed pharmacists or stockholders own at least 51 percent of a North Dakota pharmacy.

Large retailers such as Wal-Mart, Target and Walgreen’s would like to see that change because as it stands, pharmacies inside those stores, must be independently owned and operated by resident pharmacists.

Two small-town pharmacists like it that way and don’t believe the law should be changed. They both claim that if corporate-owned pharmacies are allowed to operate in the state, it will mean the end of a lot of local, service-oriented pharmacies across North Dakota, not to mention lost jobs to the larger communities.


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