Drs. Kelly and Sogol have provided us with a 360-degree view of this aspiration from the perspective of physicians, nurses, patients and other pharmacists. They have identified from their experiences the essential qualities of a “good pharmacist.” The characteristics, virtues, and habits they have identified are central to the training, hiring and development of future “good pharmacists.”
The Good Pharmacist is for those who care about the use and dispensing of medication, which is the primary professional responsibility of the pharmacist. The use of the term “good pharmacist” is common in pharmacy, but it has never been clearly defined. No matter how elusive, it is our collective aspiration to be considered a “good pharmacist.”
Based on a five year study beyond the clichés that ‘”good pharmacists” are born, not made’, and ‘I know a “good pharmacist” when I see one.’ The book should be essential reading for those of us who are pharmacists, leaders in the pharmaceutical profession, and educators of pharmacists. The authors’ insights help us understand how others who use and need our services discover what makes a “good pharmacist.” These are our customers and we need to listen to them.
This book challenges our thinking and moves us beyond our comfort zone. Medications have become the primary form of treatment today. We are currently developing personalized medication treatment plans. This coupled with new medications and biologics in the approval pipeline show great promise for the treatment and control of disease. In The Good Pharmacist the authors have identified the areas of pharmaceutical quality care that still need to be developed and standardized.
The case is clearly made that if pharmaceutical care and medication therapy management become the standard of each pharmacist’s practice, the quality of medication use will significantly improve. This will require the pharmacist to assume responsibility for their patients’ therapeutic outcomes and to worry about how well their patients do. The book provides a tool for the assessment of a “good pharmacist”, which allows practicing pharmacists to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses.
To date this book is the best effort to describe the “good pharmacist” and to identify characteristics to strive for as a new standard for pharmacist practice. This book is essential reading for student pharmacists, educators, and professional leaders who need to move the profession to a point where the “good pharmacist” is not an exception but the rule.
John A. Gans, Pharm.D.
Immediate Past Executive Vice-President
American Pharmacists Association