"I Care About My Pharmacist" campaign gaining support with Albertans

EDMONTON, March 8 /CNW/ - A campaign to raise awareness for Alberta pharmacists is gaining momentum throughout the province. Over 10,000 Albertans have signed the petition to show their support for maintaining pharmacy services in their communities.

"I Care About My Pharmacist" opposes government cuts announced in Phase 2 of the Alberta Pharmaceutical Strategy. These cuts will lead to lay-offs, fewer pharmacy services, and ultimately some pharmacists being forced to close their doors.

"I have already gone on record to say that Albertans will pay the ultimate price," says Al Hodgins, spokesperson for I Care About My Pharmacist. "The cuts from the Alberta Government will result in further cuts at the community pharmacy level-in staff and services and jobs. In fact, we've already seen this happen.

"These cuts threaten the very viability of pharmacies in rural communities," he says. "This Government policy doesn't provide Albertans with the lowest cost of medications nor does it properly compensate pharmacists for the care that they provide their patients."

The campaign is raising awareness and asking Albertans to show the government they care about the potential impact of these cuts to the services currently provided by pharmacists. Albertans from dozens of communities have come on-board to show their support.

Jody Shkrobot, a pharmacist and spokesperson for the campaign, explains that if the Government of Alberta proceeds with these cuts, rural Albertans will find that many of the services they traditionally receive from their pharmacists, with no appointments and at no cost, will disappear.

"I think that rural Albertans understand better than anybody what these cuts will mean to their health services and to their community and that's why we're seeing such strong grassroots support with our petition," says Shkrobot.

"In the end, pharmacists just won't be able to offer the same level of patient services," continued Shkrobot. "And some communities may find they don't have a pharmacist at all which puts the health and welfare of rural Albertans at risk. How is this acceptable?"

Albertans are asked to sign a petition at their local participating pharmacy or visit www.icareaboutmypharmacist.org to download the petition.

SOURCE I CARE ABOUT PHARMACY

For further information: For further information: Al Hodgins, Spokesperson, I Care About My Pharmacist, 1-888-398-4363, email.info@icareaboutmypharmacist.org, www.icareaboutmypharmacist.org; or Jody Shkrobot, Spokesperson, I Care About My Pharmacist, 1-888-398-4363, email.info@icareaboutmypharmacist.org, www.icareaboutmypharmacist.org

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I CARE ABOUT PHARMACY

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