Feedback for Exemptions and Exclusions Under the Employment Standards Act

Pharmacist  ·  Nov. 27, 2017

As a community staff pharmacist, I find that it can be difficult to provide quality care to my patients because of our being exempted from the employment standards act. I used to work at a pharmacy where I did 16 hour shifts with no designated meal breaks. While some days were quiet enough that I could find the time to eat, other days were so busy that I found myself putting off having lunch/supper for hours. It got to the point where I would get light headed and distracted by hunger. I think, as health care professionals, we know better than to work under such conditions but sometimes we don't have a choice. And while providing timely pharmaceutical care to our patients is of the utmost importance, it is also important that the pharmaceutical care we provide is of the best quality. This can be difficult if we are working long hours with little time to eat. Pharmacists being excluded from the employment standards act made sense when a lot of pharmacists were self employed (by owning their own pharmacy), but that is no longer the case. I think most community pharmacists work for retail chain stores now and can sometimes be taken advantage of because they don't fall under the protection of the employment standards act.

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