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J Am Pharm Assoc (2003). 2010 Mar-Apr 1;50(2):e35-69. doi: 10.1331/JAPhA.2010.10510.

Scope of contemporary pharmacy practice: roles, responsibilities, and functions of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.



To provide an overview of the current context and scope of pharmacy practice, the range of professional services offered by pharmacists, and the supporting role of pharmacy technicians.


A synopsis of the current state of pharmacy practice as it relates to the spectrum of professional roles and responsibilities, the diversity of patient populations served, the complexities of patient services provided, and various aspects of emerging pharmacy practice is provided. The current work focuses on patient care services provided by pharmacists; it does not address all possible activities of pharmacists, such as administration and general management. This is a descriptive analysis. It does not take a position regarding future changes but is intended to serve as a foundation for understanding the relationship and alignment between the profession's various mandatory and voluntary credentials and the scope of practice continuum. The key educational and credentialing standards for pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are summarized and referenced.


The evolutions in health care and pharmacy practice are presenting many new opportunities for pharmacists to perform functions and provide services not considered as traditional roles. The profession of pharmacy is working to achieve a pervasive model and standard of care determined only by the needs of patients and populations. The Council on Credentialing in Pharmacy hopes that the material presented herein, including the framework for credentialing in pharmacy practice, will allow audiences to gain a better understanding of where pharmacy is today and what future pharmacy practice will look like.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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