California Law Prohibits Work Quotas on Pharmacists

Beginning in 2022, a new California law prohibits certain pharmacists from being subjected to workload quotas by their employers. Thousands of people work as pharmacists across the state, with many being exempt from these harmful quotas at the start of the new year. If you believe that your rights as an employee are being violated in California, you may have a claim for compensation. To learn more, call or contact a knowledgeable and experienced California employment law attorney in your area today.

SB 362

The new law, SB 362, prohibits chain pharmacies from applying workload quotas to their pharmacists or technicians. A chain pharmacy is defined under the new law as one that is part of a chain of 75 or more stores in California under the same ownership. Up until now, chain pharmacies have subjected their workers to quota metrics in order to track how many times their employees provide a certain service or perform certain tasks during their time on the clock. The claimed purpose of these quotas was to track productivity and inform business operations; however, the new law cites overwhelming workloads for pharmacists and technicians working in chain pharmacies and the negative potential impact on patient care if the focus is on quantity and not quality of care.

Under the new law, a chain pharmacy is not allowed to establish, utilize, or communicate any types of quotas on their pharmacists or technicians. Quotas may not be applied to prescriptions filled, services rendered to clients, programs offered to patients, or revenue obtained from their services at that location.

Exceptions to the Rule

It is important to note that there are exceptions to the new law regarding quotas at chain pharmacies. First, the law only applies to chain pharmacies that have 75 or more locations owned by the same individual or entity. Smaller or individually owned pharmacies do not qualify under the new law. Second, other activities and tracking measures are not considered quotas and may be used to gauge productivity at all pharmacies, including larger chains:

  • Revenue obtained that is not measured by tasks performed or services rendered,
  • Evaluations of staff for competence, performance, or quality of care,
  • Any performance metric required by state or federal regulators that is not a quota, and
  • Pharmacy policies or procedures utilized to assess competence and performance that is not a quota.

Finally, it is important to note that the new ban on quotas applies to individuals working at large chain pharmacy locations; however, the law does not prohibit employers to use quotas and similar metrics to track the performance of each pharmacy at the entity level. These metrics could be used to identify locations where stronger scrutiny is given by employers to pharmacists and other staff.

Call or Contact a Lawyer Today

This new law is one of many that will begin in 2022 that are meant to protect workers across California. If you believe that your rights or the rights of others in your workplace are being violated, it is important that you speak with an experienced California employment law attorney today.