Nevada to Require Out-of-State Pharmacists that Dispense or Compound for Nevada Patients to Hold a Nevada Pharmacist’s License
Health & Life Sciences 08/03/21 Roger N. Morris, Edward D. Rickert, Nicholas H. Meza, Kiel J.M. Zillmer
If you are a Nevada licensed non-resident pharmacy, you will soon be receiving notification from the Nevada Board of Pharmacy (“Board”) stating that any pharmacist who dispenses or compounds prescriptions for a controlled substance or dangerous drug for a patient located in Nevada will need to be registered with the Board. In a July 22, 2021 opinion letter issued by the Board’s General Counsel, the Board now interprets NRS 639.100(1)(a) to provide that it is unlawful for any person to dispense or compound, or permit to be dispensed or compounded, any drug into the state unless the person “holds the appropriate certificate, license, or permit” required by applicable Nevada law. This interpretation is a reversal of the Board’s long-standing practice of requiring a non-resident pharmacy, but not the individual pharmacists who work at the pharmacy, to hold a Nevada license. Further, the requirement goes far beyond the requirement in many states that a non-resident pharmacy employ only a pharmacist-in-charge who is licensed in the state. As a result, if a non-Nevada licensed pharmacist who is dispensing or compounding a prescription for a Nevada resident makes an error, the Board may charge the pharmacist with the unauthorized practice of pharmacy in Nevada.
Recognizing the potential effects of this position shift and the time required to obtain a certificate of registration, the Board has created a Temporary Pharmacist Registration Request Application, available at its website, for pharmacists planning to reciprocate a license or registration from another state. The temporary registration will be valid for six months after issuance.
All pharmacies currently dispensing into Nevada should consider whether their employed pharmacists may need to simultaneously file applications for temporary registration and registration by reciprocity with the Board to ensure compliance with the state’s new registration requirement. Pharmacies that are preparing to submit an application for facility licensure to the Board or that have an application currently pending before the Board will be instructed by the Board to include a supplementary statement that they have employed or are promptly seeking to employ Nevada-licensed pharmacists at their sites.
Importantly, the state’s definition of “dispensing” does not appear to recognize an exception for pharmacies involved in shared service or central fill arrangements. Consequently, pharmacies participating in such arrangements that result in a prescription being dispensed into Nevada should consider whether their pharmacists are properly registered in Nevada.
For more information about Nevada’s new pharmacist registration requirements and how it could affect your business, please contact your Quarles & Brady attorney or: