07 April 2020 – Governor waives certain pharmacy regulations to increase workforce capabilities

Type of Intervention: Specific Action
Sectors Involved: Health
Intervention Categories: Legal and policy; Regulatory change
Level of Jurisdiction: Texas
Lead People/Agency: Governor Greg Abbott

Overview: Governor Greg Abbott has temporarily waived certain regulatory requirements to increase the job capacities of pharmacy technicians and pharmacy interns. Under the Governor’s waiver, pharmacy technicians can now accept prescription drug orders over the phone — a responsibility typically reserved for pharmacists. The Governor’s waiver also allows pharmacy technicians to transfer or receive a transfer of original prescription information on behalf of patients. These two waivers can be utilized at the discretion of pharmacists. Additionally, Governor Abbott has waived certain regulations allowing pharmacy interns to assist pharmacists without the designation of preceptor.
Full details here: https://gov.texas.gov/news/post/governor-abbott-waives-certain-pharmacy-regulations-to-increase-workforce-capabilities

Type of Justification: Anecdotal Evidence (e.g. social or traditional media with limited evidence base)
Evidence/Justification: This follows action on March 20th when Governor Greg Abbott announced that he is temporarily suspending certain regulations to ensure that Texans will have continued access to their pharmacists as the state responds to COVID-19. Also on March 28th Governor Greg Abbott waived certain licensing renewal regulations for Texas pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and pharmacy technician trainees. Governor Abott commented on the regulations passed on April 7: “By expanding the duties of pharmacy technicians and the additional availability of interns to all pharmacists, we are ensuring members of the pharmacy workforce can efficiently serve their fellow Texans throughout the COVID-19 response. These waivers provide flexibility to our pharmacists and those that assist them to ensure they can continue to perform their important duties.”