Pharmacists are not obligated to fill prescriptions if they disagree with contents based on personal moral or religious values.
This article is based on corporate postings and accredited media reports. Linked information within this article is attributed to the following outlets: Twitter.com, NJ.com, Wikipedia.org, ScrapeHero.com, Newsweek.com, and The Star Tribune.
On July 18, 2022, it was reported that pharmacists working at stalwart superchain Walgreens have increasingly been rejecting prescriptions. It should be noted this is not a recent policy on the part of the company, though such incidents are said to be at a peak.
The following Tweet was posted in 2018 by a Walgreens representative:
Such a policy enables a pharmacist to turn down a prescription, though they would then be obligated, per the company, to hand said prescription for another pharmacist or manager to fill.
The subsequent issue, however, becomes one of if no store pharmacist or manager is willing to fill that prescription, the customer would have to go elsewhere.
NJ.com was but one media outlet to address the matter last evening, in its article entitled “Walgreens Boycott Trends After Birth Control, Condom Sales Refused. ‘This Should Not Be Happening.’”
As excerpted from the article: What is going on at Walgreens? It’s a question people are asking, calling for a Walgreens boycott after a series of customer stories emerged on social media making claims about troubling barriers to health care and the way personal information is used by the pharmacy chain.Over the last few weeks, people have said they were denied birth control pills and condoms at Walgreens. Another customer said she was sent a box of baby formula after buying a pregnancy test at the store.
Let us explore further.
For perspective, Wikipedia features a comprehensive overview of the Walgreens chain: Walgreen Company, d/b/a Walgreens, is an American company that operates the second-largest pharmacy store chain in the United States behind CVS Health. It specializes in filling prescriptions, health and wellness products, health information, and photo services. It was founded in Chicago, Illinois, in 1901, and is headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Deerfield, Illinois. On December 31, 2014, Walgreens and Switzerland-based Alliance Boots merged to form a new holding company, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. Walgreens became a subsidiary of the new company, which retained its Deerfield headquarters and trades on the Nasdaq under the symbol WBA.
According to ScrapeHero.com: There are 8,892 Walgreens locations in the United States as of July 11, 2022. The state with the most number of Walgreens locations in the US is Florida, with 816 locations, which is 9% of all Walgreens locations in America.
On the matter of recent calls for boycotting the company, Newsweek.com published “Walgreens Hit By Boycott Calls Amid Claims of Birth Control Sales Hassles,” which stated: Calls for boycotts ramped up on social media on Monday after an article published by The Star Tribune earlier in July featured a Minnesota woman named Jessica Pentz detailing a Walgreens clerk allegedly refusing to sell her condoms based on a religious objection. The incident allegedly happened over the July 4th weekend, when Pentz visited a store while on vacation in Wisconsin with her husband Nate, who later shared an account of the refusal on Twitter. Pentz told the Tribune that the clerk, who she said was named "John," told her that he could not "sell those" due to "what [his] faith demands." The store's manager was later called over to complete the sale, while the clerk allegedly walked away with "a smirk."
In the meantime, #BoycottWalgreens continues to trend.
There has been no word from the company of any upcoming change of the controversial policy.
Should any updates be announced, I will report them here on NewsBreak.
Thank you for reading.