As a pharmacist, it behooves you to belong to associations. Through these you will learn about new products and regulation; you will be connected to others in the same line of work; and you will have support with big decisions or times of trouble.
Below are the most significant associations for pharmacists:
National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS)
Based in Alexandria, Va., the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) represents everything from traditional drug stores to supermarket pharmacies, and these stores can operate anywhere from four to hundreds of outlets.
NACDS represents 137 chains that operate across the U.S., and its members include more than 900 pharmacy and consumer packaged goods suppliers and service providers, and another 60 international members from 23 different countries.
NACDS aims to promote the role of the community pharmacy and emphasizes the importance of that pharmacy at the heart of hundreds of neighborhoods across the U.S.
The association conducts a lot of work on a political level to create an advantageous environment for its members.
It also promotes chain pharmacy as an integral part of healthcare, thereby proving its validity.
The American Pharmacists Association (APhA)
The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) prides itself on providing information to pharmacists; raising awareness about pharmacists’ roles; providing resources to help pharmacists develop their trade; educating and influencing those in positions of power as well as the public on topics important to pharmacists; and creating opportunities for pharmacists to network.
The APhA was founded in 1852 as the American Pharmaceutical Association. It is the largest pharmacists’ association in the U.S., with more than 60,000 practicing pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists, student pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and others as members.
The American Association of Pharmacy Technicians (AAPT)
Non-profit AAPT began in 1979, run by volunteer pharmacy technicians. It is still run by volunteers today.
The AAPT promotes the safe, efficacious, and cost effective dispensing, distribution and use of medications. It also provides leadership to its members along with education and services to help pharmacy techs update their skills. The AAPT also promotes the essential work of pharmacy technicians as an integral part of the pharmacy team.
International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists (IACP)
The International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists (IACP) represents more than 2,070 compounding pharmacists and technicians. In addition, more than 154,800 patients who rely on compounded medicines are also members. The IACP has worked to protect, promote and advance the art and science of the pharmacy compounding profession since 1991.
The International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists is the recognized authority for information, expertise, and practice standards concerning pharmacy compounding.
National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA)
The NCPA represents independent community pharmacists. It is dedicated to growing this profession throughout the U.S. Because of this, it works to ensure that independent community pharmacists can compete in a free and fair marketplace. In order to achieve its ends, it petitions appropriate legislative and regulatory bodies to serve the needs of those it represents.
National Pharmacy Technician Association (NPTA)
Founded in 1999, the National Pharmacy Technician Association is the world's largest professional organization established specifically for pharmacy technicians.
It is dedicated to advancing the value of pharmacy technicians. The organization is composed of pharmacy technicians practicing in pharmacy settings ranging from retail, independent and hospital pharmacies to mail-order, home care, long term care, nuclear, military, correctional facility and formal education.
NPTA helps pharmacy technicians realize and reach their full potential, both professionally and personally. The association provides a community and services for pharmacy techs and hopes to inspire its members in both their work and personally.
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)
The Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association was founded in 1958. In 1994 the association changed its name to the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America to underscore the commitment to research of many pharmaceutical companies.
Headquartered in Washington, D.C. (with offices also in Albany, N.Y.; Atlanta; Baton Rouge, La.; Denver; Indianapolis; Olympia, Wash.; St. Paul, Minn.; Sacramento, Calif.; Massachusetts; and Tokyo, Japan), PhRMA represents the country’s leading pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies.
These companies represent big names and in 2010, PhRMA members alone invested an estimated $49.4 billion in discovering and developing new medicines.
PhRMA's mission is to conduct effective advocacy for public policies that encourage discovery of important new medicines for patients by pharmaceutical and biotechnology research companies. Its goals include providing broad patient access to safe and effective medicines through a free market—one that has no price controls; providing strong intellectual property incentives; and ensuring the transparent, efficient regulation and a free flow of information to patients.