In July, Walmart laid off about 3% of its pharmacy staff across the US. Approximately 50% were senior level pharmacists. Learn more about what Daniel Hussar, PHD, FAPha thinks about this action that can literally put patients health in jeopardy.
“The Walmart actions have been extremely evasive as well as punitive and I sympathize with the horrible experiences that these pharmacists and technicians have because of Walmart mismanagement. It’s not the fault of the pharmacists and the techs for not knowing how to operate pharmacies successfully,” Daniel A. Hussar, PhD, FAPhA, professor emeritus at Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and author of PharmacistActivist.com, tells Drug Topics.
Although there is no specific information, the layoffs appear to have hit older individuals harder. “That is age discrimination,” Steven R. Ariens, RPh, a retired independent pharmacist and author of the “Pharmacist Steve” blog, tellsDrug Topics.
He estimates the cuts affect between 500 and 1,000 pharmacists and techs, based on Walmart’s statement that it is cutting around 3% of its pharmacy staff.
A Walmart spokesperson declined to disclose the exact number of staff laid off. “As we continue to position our business, we are making some adjustments in health and wellness that will impact approximately 3% of our pharmacy associates. We’re working with these associates to find other open positions within the company,” Walmart says in a statement.
Further, the spokesperson told Drug Topics: “We are on a transformational journey on how we operate our pharmacies and serve our customers, investing in key growth areas to develop our business and associates. We are aligning our staffing with the demands of the business to consistently serve our customers now and in the future,” the retailer says.
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