Unsafe Pharmacy Conditions Put Patient Safety at Risk, Spark ‘Big Resignation’ Among Pharmacy Technicians

New Survey Shows Significant Percentage of Pharmacy Technicians Quit Due to Poor Working Conditions That Create Patient Safety Concerns

HOUSTON, May 3, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Understaffing, heightened expectations and new responsibilities in the COVID-19 era are creating extreme burnout among pharmacy technicians, who worry about its impact on patient safety, according to a recent survey conducted by the National Pharmacy Technician Association (NPTA).

The survey of 1,386 pharmacy technicians found that poor working conditions caused 36% of respondents to plan to leave their jobs in the next three to twelve months. This is in addition to the record growth of 25.7% in the employment transition of pharmacy technicians seen from 2019 to 2021.

91.4% of participants report experiencing burnout caused by unmanageable workloads caused by understaffing and increased responsibilities, unrealistic expectations, low pay, and even productivity quotas. In addition to these requests, 44% of participants said their employers were also not providing legally required breaks.

Yet 91.6% said they had a passion for their work. This passion, coupled with concerns about the impacts of burnout, led 56% of respondents to say that these conditions negatively affect patient safety. Pharmacy burnout can lead to serious and even fatal medication errors.

“As the largest organization of pharmacy technicians, our number one priority has always been to ensure quality and safe patient care,” said mike johnson, CEO of NPTA. “We all have a responsibility to ensure that pharmacies make meaningful changes to these working conditions, not only for the benefit of their employees, but also to protect their patients.”

To support these advocacy efforts to improve patient safety, the NPTA has partnered with the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) to invite pharmacy technicians to participate in a new anonymous survey asking for specific accounts on the negative impact of these working conditions on patient safety. The results of this survey will be shared with regulators, legislators, employers and industry organizations to provide the data needed to make changes. Submissions can be made at www.pharmacytechnician.org/safety

About the National Association of Pharmacy Technicians
The National Pharmacy Technician Association (NPTA), founded in 1999, is the largest professional association for pharmacy technicians in the world. The association represents more than 80,000 individuals practicing in a variety of practice settings, including community pharmacy, health system pharmacy, federal pharmacy services, purchasing, and education, among others. The NPTA is committed to advancing the careers of pharmacy technicians through education, advocacy, and support. Visit pharmacytechnican.org to learn more.

About the Institute for Safe Medication Practices
The Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) is the nation’s first 501c(3) nonprofit organization devoted entirely to the prevention of medication errors. ISMP’s advocacy work alone has led to many needed changes in clinical practice, public policy, and drug labeling and packaging. In 2020, ISMP formally affiliated with ECRI to create one of the largest healthcare quality and safety entities that is a federally certified patient safety organization. Visit ismp.org to learn more.

Media contact:
Edgar Galvan
[email protected]

SOURCE National Association of Pharmacy Technicians

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