Nevada Pharmacy Board Will Consider Pharmacists’ Conscience Clause

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 24, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Nevada Pharmacy Board Will Consider Pharmacists’ Conscience Clause Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 24, 2005

Reno, NV ( — The Nevada Board of Pharmacy will take up a proposal on Thursday to allow Nevada pharmacists to opt out of filling a prescription that violates their moral or religious beliefs. The idea is to allow pro-life pharmacists and other to be able to not be required to fill prescriptions for drugs that may cause abortions, like morning after pills.

The state board has been flooded with phone calls and emails since news has gotten out about the proposal.

Backers say pharmacists should not be forced to be a party to something like an abortion that violates their moral beliefs.

"Nobody tells a physician he has to perform an abortion," board general counsel Louis Ling told the Reno Gazette-Journal. "No other health care professional is forced to do something over her beliefs."

But Assemblywoman Chris Giunchigliani, a Democrat from Las Vegas, opposes the idea and told the Associated Press, "This is about someone trying to inflict their personal motives on someone else’s medical care, and that’s not their job."

The regulations being considered would allow pharmacists to not have to fill a prescription as long as they informed their employer beforehand abbot the kinds of drugs they want to avoid. The notice would have to be done in writing and the pharmacist would be required to help customers find another pharmacy that would fill the script.

Pat Elzy, spokesman for Planned Parenthood in Reno, told AP her abortion business wants assurances that people buying some drugs won’t be forced to travel to another city to get them.

Pharmacist Delia Munoz of Sparks, Nevada, says the regulation is a good idea, especially since she’s a Catholic and opposed to abortion. She gives prescriptions for Plan B to other pharmacists to fill.

"By law, they should not force certain professionals to do stuff that is really against their beliefs," she said.

Four states already have laws in place protecting pharmacists and other states are considering them.