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Ending the Pharmacist-Patient Relationship
All decisions affecting the care and treatment of patients are taken within the context of this legal and ethical framework. Patients are entitled to dignity and respect when interacting with health professionals. The pharmacist must ensure that the decision to terminate care does not infringe a prohibited ground within the meaning of the Ontario Human Rights Code. Where several pharmacists work together, it may be appropriate to plan in advance how terminations will be executed, and whether another member is available to provide patient care. Depending on the reason for the termination, the member will communicate the decision to terminate service in writing, unless the patient has no fixed address or the pharmacy does not have a current address on file. When communicating the decision in person, it is important to maintain acoustical privacy while ensuring that both the patient and staff members are safe. The patient should be clear about the availability of refills or other professional services until he or she is able to obtain services from another pharmacist. The amount of time provided for the patient to find a new pharmacist will be reflective of the condition of the patient, his or her special needs and availability of services in the local community.
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