Are Pharmacists at Major NJ Drug Stores Calling Out Sick in Protest?
Pharmacists at several national drug store chains are planning another work stoppage to protest their working conditions.
Workers at CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens nationwide have vowed to call out sick on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, Shane Jerominski told Fox Business. Jerominski, a licensed pharmacist who heads a group called the Accidental Pharmacist, is coordinating the protest.
They've nicknamed the plan "Pharmageddon." It's not clear how many New Jersey stores are impacted by the sickout.
The pharmacists claim the issues they're facing have not been resolved: pressure, burnout and extra work demands. They are looking for guaranteed hours, better pay and a say in scheduling.
Addresses pharmacist concerns
Two Walgreens locations in the country have temporarily closed because of "pharmageddon." It's not known where the stores are located.
"We recognize the incredible work our pharmacists and technicians do every day and have taken a number of steps in our pharmacies to ensure that our teams can concentrate on providing optimal patient care. Our ongoing efforts are focused on how we recruit, retain, and reward our pharmacy staff," a Walgreens spokesperson said. "Our leaders are in our pharmacies regularly, listening to concerns and frustrations and responding to feedback."
Two other chains targeted by "Pharmageddon" say it is not having much of an impact on business on Monday.
"We’re serving patients across our footprint today and we're not seeing any unusual activity regarding unplanned pharmacy closures or pharmacist walkouts," CVS spokeswoman Amy Thibault told New Jersey 101.5 in an email.
Thibault said that the company is making investments to respond to some of the concerns of pharmacists with allowing teams to schedule additional support as needed and enhanced training.
Rite Aid spokeswoman Alicja Wojczyk had a similar response and said she is unaware of anyone from her company participating.
"Rite Aid has exceptional talent across our retail footprint, and nowhere is this more evident than in our pharmacy team through relationships with our customers. We remain committed to providing safe, productive and supportive work environments for all our associates, including our dedicated pharmacists, who serve our communities by providing vaccines, prescriptions and day-to-day guidance on whole health," Wojczyk said.
Walgreens on Monday morning did not respond to New Jersey 101.5's request for more information.
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