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Pharmacy Robberies on the Rise – Develop Policies & Procedures

Pharmacy Robberies on the Rise – Develop Policies & Procedures

Rising Pharmacy Robberies:

Although recently the news has been filled with stories about criminals finally receiving long prison sentences resulting from arrests in pharmacy robberies, reports show that pharmacy robberies are actually on the rise. In 2014, 829 robberies of community retail pharmacies were reported (this includes both chain and independently owned drug stores). According to the latest report from the DEA, 2015 is on pace to set a new record for the number of pharmacy burglaries and robberies. This is alarming after the trend seemed to be a decrease (745 in 2012 down to 713 in 2013). The DEA report is also very alarming in that it reveals that in the first 5 months of 2015 there have already been 382 armed robberies of pharmacies reported. Keep in mind that the DEA statistics do not include theft by pharmacy employees, which obviously is another area of concern in our profession.

Also of interest is the breakdown released by the DEA of the top 20 states for pharmacy robberies so far in 2015:


Many factors obviously contribute to the increase in pharmacy robberies, but the two most often cited are:

-An increased demand created by a growing prescription drug abuse and addiction problem.
-Economic return for prescription medications on the rise due to tighter controls and certain drugs being reclassified (such as Tramadol).

Experts all agree that there are two major areas for Pharmacists to concentrate on in preparing for potential robberies:

-Development of documented policies and procedures that ensure the safety of the pharmacist, staff and customers.
-Training of all employees on how to properly respond (and that training should be routinely ongoing and documented).

Are you and your pharmacy prepared to deal with robberies? Do you have policies and procedures written for your business and employees to act on if such a crisis arises? Do you have inventory policies in place to help determine what was taken during a burglary? Do you have training in place to help your employees in these situations that will minimize your possible liabilities? If the answers are no, then contact HCC Pharmacy Staffing to see how we can help you.

Healthcare Consulting has been a full service Pharmacy staffing and consulting firm that has been in business for over 25 years. HCC has been helping pharmacies plan, prepare and deal with such crisis situations since 1989. Just a few examples of our services include:

– Development of Policies and Procedures
– Employee Crisis Training
– Inventory Management
– Pharmacy Management Consultation

Although we all hope that we will never personally deal with such situations, I strongly urge you to be prepared. Contact us on line or call us today for a Free Consultation at 800-642-1652 to discuss how we can help you.

Bob Miller

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