KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Some CVS and Walgreens pharmacists walked off the job a few weeks ago, and now there’s concern it could happen again.
Amanda Applegate, director of practice development for the Kansas Pharmacists Association, said more pharmacy walkouts could take place at the end of October.
Applegate said the dates that organizers are planning to walk out are Oct. 30 through Nov. 1.
“I think at the end of the day, their concern is their patients is they don’t want to do this.” Applegate said in an interview with FOX4 Friday.
“I think the walkouts are all of the above as pharmacists in a lot of these retail chain environments are protesting the environment in which they’re being asked to do their job,” Applegate said when asked if she thought walkouts would take place at more CVS and Walgreens stores.
“I feel more positive now than I have at any point in the last couple of years,” Schneider said in an interview with FOX4 Friday. “I feel like the message got through and the response has been encouraging.”
Schneider works at the CVS store at 10th and Main, but he didn’t want to show his face on camera.
“A number of pharmacists and pharmacy staff, technician staff have been involved as well, did walk out to send a message that we needed more help,” he said about Sept. 27.
Earlier in October, Walgreens pharmacists at some U.S. locations followed suit, walking off the job.
Company leaders at Walgreens would not respond to FOX4’s requests for comment about the potential for future walkouts. FOX4 has no knowledge of local Walgreens employees that have walked off the job already.
“We’re committed to providing access to consistent, safe, high-quality health care to the patients and communities we serve and are working with our pharmacists to directly address any concerns they may have.
“We’re focused on developing a sustainable, scalable action plan to support both our pharmacists and our customers, that can be put in place in markets where support may be needed so we can continue delivering the high-quality care our patients depend on,” CVS Pharmacy Lead Director for External Communications Amy Thibault said in a statement to FOX4.
“Our leaders are actively engaged with our pharmacists to directly address concerns they’ve raised, and we’re providing ongoing updates on the progress made directly to our pharmacy teams. We’re engaging in a continuous two-way dialogue to share how we’re meeting the commitments we’ve made to our teams and to continue to hear their direct feedback.”
Schneider did have one answer that was different from what Applegate said.
“At this point, I’ve seen no plans for CVS pharmacists in Kansas City to have further walkouts,” Schneider continued.
“I can’t speak for anybody else but from what I’ve heard and from my own feelings, I think the plan is to let things play out, let the changes be implemented that we’ve been promised, and hopefully, there won’t be any need for it.”