Section 34-23-70

Management; display of permit and license; poisons; prescription requirements; violations.

(a) Every pharmacy when opened for business shall be under the personal supervision of a duly licensed pharmacist who shall have personal supervision of not more than one pharmacy at the same time. During temporary absences of the licensed pharmacist, not to exceed three hours daily or more than one and one-half hours at any one time, nor more than one week for temporary illness, the prescription department shall be closed, and no prescriptions are to be filled. During the temporary absence of a pharmacist, a sign shall be placed on the prescription counter in a prominent location easily seen by the public stating, "Prescription Department Closed, No Pharmacist on Duty."

(b) The permit issued to each pharmacist by the board and the licensure certificates issued to the licensed pharmacist employed by each pharmacy must be prominently and conspicuously displayed in the pharmacy. The name of the licensed pharmacist on duty must be conspicuously displayed in the prescription department in a place readily observable by the public.

(c)(1) No licensed pharmacist or pharmacy operating within this state shall accept for refund purposes or otherwise any unused portion of any dispensed prescription.

(2) The prohibition in subdivision (1) shall not apply to any unused or expired dispensed medication returned solely for the purpose of destruction in compliance with applicable law or rules of the board.

(d) The sale of poisons is restricted to the immediate supervision of a licensed pharmacist, and such poison shall not be displayed in a pharmacy in such a manner that a customer may obtain possession of such poisons when standing in an area allocated for customer use. No sale of a poison shall be made or delivered to any minor under 12 years of age or to any person known to be of unsound mind or under the influence of alcohol.

(e) No pharmacy shall authorize any person, firm, or business establishment to serve as a pick-up station or intermediary for the purpose of having prescriptions filled or delivered, whether for profit or gratuitously. Except with respect to controlled substances, the following federally qualified health care centers are expressly exempt from this subsection: Birmingham Health Care, Inc., Central Alabama Comprehensive Health, Inc., Health Services, Inc., Family Oriented Primary Health Care Clinic/Mobile County Health Department, Franklin Primary Health Center, Quality of Life Health Services, Inc., and Whatley Health Services, Inc. Each named federally qualified health center is authorized to fill certain prescriptions at one location and deliver medications to clinics for patient pick-up subject to the review of the board.

(f) No prescription blank supplied by a pharmacy or pharmacist to a practitioner shall bear the imprint thereon of the name or address of any pharmacy or bear the name or address of any person registered under this chapter.

(g)(1) No person shall fill or compound a prescription or drug order in an institution unless he or she is a duly licensed pharmacist or otherwise permitted to do so under this chapter. The act of filling or compounding prescriptions or drug orders in an institution shall be as defined in the rules and regulations adopted by the board.

(2) However, such rules and regulations shall not apply to the reading, interpreting, and writing or verifying the writing of adequate directions as are necessary to assure patient's understanding of the prescriber's intentions by a duly qualified nurse practicing his or her profession in a licensed hospital or similar institution.

(h) Nothing in this chapter shall authorize the board to promulgate or to enforce any rule or regulation which governs, regulates, or restricts the professional practice of a physician licensed to practice medicine in this state. No provision of this chapter, or any rule promulgated under the authority of this chapter, shall be interpreted to amend, alter, or modify Section 34-23-11.

(i) Only a licensed pharmacist or registered intern may accept an oral prescription of any nature. Upon so accepting such oral prescription, it must immediately be reduced to writing, and only a licensed pharmacist or an intern supervised by a licensed pharmacist may prepare a copy of a prescription or read a prescription to any person for purposes of providing reference concerning treatment of the person or animal for whom the prescription was written; and, when the copy is given, a notation shall be made upon the prescription that a copy has been given, the date given, and to whom given.

(j) If a prescription is refilled, a record of the date upon which the prescription is refilled must appear on the prescription or in a permanent prescription record book. On prescriptions which may be refilled, written or oral authorization must be received before refilling unless the number of refills is indicated on the original prescription. Those prescriptions marked "refill prn" or equivalent designation shall be refilled only in quantities commensurate with the dosage scheduled.

(k) Each prescription must be written in a manner so that it can be compounded by any registered pharmacist. The coding of any prescription is in violation of this chapter. No prescription shall be written in any characters, figures, or ciphers, other than in the English or Latin language, generally in use among medical and pharmaceutical practitioners.

(l) A prescription file or files shall be kept by every pharmacy for a period of not less than two years in which the original of every prescription compounded or dispensed shall be filed in the order of compounding with number and date of dispensing placed on each prescription. Each pharmacy shall produce any prescription file whenever legally required to do so. Such prescription file shall at all times be open for inspection by the prescriber, the board, or its investigators.

(m) All drugs or drug preparations bearing upon the package the words, "caution, federal law prohibits dispensing without prescription" or words to the same effect, otherwise known as legend drugs, shall be stored within the confines of the prescription department or the prescription department storage room of each pharmacy. Such drugs shall be sold or dispensed only on the prescription of a licensed practitioner authorized to prescribe such drugs and shall not be sold or dispensed as a refilled prescription except upon the express authorization of the prescriber. This shall not be construed to prohibit return to authorized suppliers or sale or transfer to others licensed to possess legend drugs.

(n) Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Acts 1966, Ex. Sess., No. 205, p. 231, §15; Acts 1989, No. 89-747, p. 1513, §1; Act 2009-772, p. 2385, §1; Act 2012-553, p. 1631, §1; Act 2013-198, p. 387, §1; Act 2017-422, §1.)