A Publication of the Saskatchewan Pharmaceutical Association
An Opportunity For Professionalism
The Professional Practice Committee of the Saskatchewan Pharmaceutical Association has been considering the issue of control over the distribution of non-prescription drugs. Council has accepted the Committee's proposed Professional Services Area (PSA) concept and has adopted the accompanying Bylaw. The concept reflects SPhA's contemporary pharmacy practice philosophy.
Major features of the PSA Bylaw are:
1. Definition of the PSA,
2. Inclusions within and exclusions from the area,
3. Delineation of the area from the remainder of the premises,
The PSA Bylaw is mandatory for all new Pharmacies. Except for "Dispensing-Only Pharmacies", the deadline for compliance by existing pharmacies is April 1, 1986. "Dispensing-Only Pharmacies"' are exempted and are defined as "a Pharmacy wherein the practice of pharmacy is limited to dispensing prescriptions and providing associated professional services and products and which do not contain a conventional front store".
1. Demonstrate pharmacist control over the sale of non-prescription medicine in Pharmacies so that the profession may continue to justify exclusivity of sale,
2. Clearly define the specific area of the pharmacy in which the public will recognize the place where professional services are offered,
3. Provide pharmacists with a new and unique marketing tool in playing a leading role in supplying heath services,
4. View the PSA as an excellent opportunity to enhance the contemporary role of a pharmacist as a concerned health care professional.
The PSA means the area in each licensed pharmacy which includes the dispensary and all shelves, displays or fixtures bearing drugs and other items as permitted and which shelves, displays or fixtures are in an area in the vicinity of the dispensary so that they are under the audio and visual control of the pharmacist (Section 188.8.131.52 of the Bylaws).
Inclusions and Exclusions
All drugs restricted to sale in Pharmacies must be included in the PSA. Other heath related products, such as first aid supplies, surgical appliances and animal health supplies may be included. However, non-health related items, such as cards, gifts, tobacco products and cosmetics must be excluded from the PSA. The PSA shall be under the personal attendance and supervision of a pharmacist unless an approved Lock and Leave Permit has been granted and is in operation.
Displays within the PSA must not contain any non PSA items, conversely PSA products may not be merchandised outside the PSA.
The PSA must be a well defined single area under the audio and visual control of a pharmacist and differ significantly from the remainder of the premises.
The PSA shall be delineated from the remainder of the premises by:
1. The display, on the boundary of the PSA, a "Professional Services Area" sign of suitable size, and;
2. Using one or more optional methods such as the use of "Drug Caution Code", variation in flooring, ceiling. decor, fixtures, lighting, or additional signs or by physical separation.
If more than one additional method has been adopted, each method used will have to fulfill its particular requirement as described in the Bylaw.
1. Drug Caution Code provides for the labeling of OTC products within the PSA with a code which corresponds to a cautionary statement posted on a sign within the PSA. All appropriate products in the PSA shall be individually coded.
This program is a professionally rewarding mechanism for establishing lines of communication with the consumer and re-establishing the pharmacy as the logical source of both prescription and non-prescription drugs. To encourage greater consumer participation in the program, all the available Drug Caution Code material should be used and displayed. This includes the use of shelf-talkers, posters, pamphlets and decals.
2. Variation in decor includes any change in the decor, such as furniture, wall coverings or painted walls. Examples of acceptable alternatives include:
1. Use of special wall graphics encompassing the designated area to indicate a change in product availability to be found within the PSA.
2. A significant change in the colour of those walls surrounding the PSA resulting in an area where the colour differs from that of the remainder of the store.
3. Variation In Flooring involves a significant change in the Flooring found within the boundary of the PSA and would include:
1. The use of a carpeted PSA I the remainder of the store is finished with floor tiles.
2. The use of similar flooring material but incorporating a significant different floor colour within the PSA.
3. The use of a bold, contrasting border which clearly outlines the PSA boundary.
4. The raising or lowering of the floor of the entire PSA including the dispensary.
4. Variation In the ceiling includes such options as:
1. The use of different ceiling material such as a stippled ceiling within the PSA if the remainder of the store is finished in tile.
2. The raising or lowering of the ceiling within the bounds of the PSA.
3. Adoption of a lowered canopy or false front (valance) which would outline the entire PSA in a clear, definite fashion.
5. Variation in Fixtures used within the PSA offers additional options for compliance such as:
1. The use of shelving units of contrasting height, either a significant reduction or increase in the height of the units found within the PSA.
2. The use of Shelving units of contrasting colour different from the remainder used in the store.
3. The turning of the existing fixtures found in the PSA to face a different direction-either at right angle or some other angle.
6. The use of lighting offers the following possible options:
1. Utilization of different lighting fixtures within the PSA.
2. The raising or lowering of the PSA lighting fixtures.
3. The use of contrasting or different light intensities.
7. The use of additional signing to indicate the location of the various product sections and product categories within the PSA is an option easily incorporated. To further delineate the PSA, it is recommended that the colour of the signs used within the PSA should differ significantly from other in-store signing and be unique to the PSA. This concept could be accomplished by the simple reversal of the colours of the signs used in the PSA. Thus, corporate in-store colours could be retained and yet give the PSA a unique series of signs. A description of each major product group would be necessary to fulfill this option. Examples of "Cough and Cold", "Laxatives", "Analgesics" indicate such product locations. There are many other product grouping signs available. The number of signs used would depend on store and department size.
The use of the approved PSA sign measuring four inches by forty-eight inches is mandatory and may be supplemented with other store or corporate signing.
8. A suitable physical barrier to separate the PSA from the remainder of the premises is another available option. Those pharmacies with an approved "Lock and Leave" permit have met the necessary additional requirement.
Due to the number of options available in complying with this bylaw, each pharmacy will have its own unique PSA features.
To ensure complete adherence to all aspects of the PSA, monitoring of Pharmacies will be carried out through the regular field operations of this Association. As with other standards, compliance with the PSA bylaw is a standard for licensure of a pharmacy.