In response to a letter physician organizations sent to State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy (SOBP) Director Stephen Schierholt in December 2016, the SOBP replied saying it has carefully reviewed comments made and has agreed to remove language requiring an executed agreement when storing records off-site that allowed a pharmacy board inspector access to records within a three-day period. The Ohio Academy of Family Physicians and several other physician associations jointly submitted comments stating the requirements were excessive and unnecessary. There are already strict requirements about the use of off-site storage facilities or databases. For the SOBP to impose additional requirements is inappropriate and overly burdensome.
While the SOBP conceded the point about storage facilities, they didn’t give an inch about concerns expressed that there may be a lack of communication and coordination of investigatory efforts between the medical board and the pharmacy board. They asserted in the response that “Both agencies have a strong working relationship that includes regular communication between our corresponding departments responsible for enforcing our respective laws and rules.”
The letter lectured the physician organizations about the SOBP’s legislative mandate to investigate matters involving the safe storage and use of prescription medications and pushed back against the need for a designated physician seat on the pharmacy board because physicians can comment on rules through the “robust comment process offered by the Common Sense Initiative that is used to obtain broad stakeholder input.”
As the pharmacy board continues to be more and more involved in the regulation of physician offices, it would certainly seem that physicians should be viewed as something more than “broad stakeholders.”