For the eighth straight year, pharmacists have placed in the top three in Gallup's Honesty and Ethics survey, which gauges the public's trust of professionals in a range of disciplines across industries.


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Gallup poll: Pharmacists rank high in integrity

December 6th, 2010

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – For the eighth straight year, pharmacists have placed in the top three in Gallup's Honesty and Ethics survey, which gauges the public's trust of professionals in a range of disciplines across industries.

In the Gallup telephone survey of more than 1,000 adults, 81% of respondents rated the honesty and ethical standards of nurses as "very high/high," followed by military officers (73%) and pharmacists (71%).

Rounding out the top five in the Gallup Honesty and Ethnics survey were grade school teachers (67% rated very high/high) and medical doctors (66% rated very high/high). Ranking near the bottom were car salesmen and lobbyists (only 7% rated very high/high) and members of Congress (only 9% rated very high/high).

The percentage of respondents rating pharmacists as very high/high in terms of honesty and ethnics was up five percentage points this year from the 2009 survey, when 66% of those polled held pharmacists in high regard in the area of integrity.

Nurses have held the top spot in 11 of the past 12 surveys, though pharmacists finished No. 1 in integrity 10 times between 1988 and 1998.

"Pharmacists are the face of neighborhood health care. They are highly accessible, with nearly all Americans living within five miles of a community pharmacy. They also are highly trusted, a concept that is supported again by the Gallup survey," Steve Anderson, president and chief executive officer of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, said in a statement on the survey results, which were released on Friday.

"The public trust in pharmacists that is reflected in the Gallup survey provides further support for entrusting pharmacists with responsibilities that can help improve patients' lives and reduce health care costs," Anderson added.

NACDS and the National Community Pharmacists Association also pointed to pharmacists' knowledge and training in traditional pharmacy as well as their ability to offer a range of related services — such as medication therapy management, immunizations, home delivery, durable medical equipment and supplies, and chronic disease management — as a big factor behind their high trust quotient among the public.

"Gallup has been polling Americans about their views of various professions for decades, and once again pharmacists rank among the top professions for honesty and ethics," NCPA executive vice president and CEO Kathleen Jaeger stated. "In fact, the confidence Americans place in pharmacists actually increased this year. Respondents to the 2010 poll gave pharmacists the largest one-year percentage increase in trustworthiness of any profession included in the 2009 survey.

"Pharmacists are knowledgeable, accessible and take time to answer patients' questions," Jaeger noted. "So it's no wonder that pharmacists are held in high regard."

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