A Gleichen Alberta pharmacist has been sanctioned by the Alberta College of Pharmacy (ACP) and must pay a fine to a maximum of $16,000.

A hearing tribunal held a hearing into the conduct of Bernadette Galang, Nov. 23, 2022, to address allegations of professional misconduct against her. 

The hearing was deemed necessary as it was alleged that between June 26, 2020 and June 18, 2021, Galang failed to employ the requisite number of staff with adequate training and qualifications to provide safe and effective pharmacy services. 

Specifically, on Fridays, Galang was accused of having the pharmacy at which she was an owner, open to the public without a pharmacist present; one or more unregulated employees of the pharmacy were scheduled to and did attend the pharmacy to perform services and restricted activities without a pharmacist present; the attendance of a pharmacist not employed by the pharmacy attending the location who did not document their professional services, nor did they have access to Kroll software; and performing services outside of hours of operation.

The allegations also included measures which suggested Galang’s professional judgement had been impaired by the prospect of commercial benefit by operating outside of designated hours and without a registered pharmacist on site, and failed to provide adequate supervision to unregulated employees.

According to the decision of the hearing tribunal, Galang allegedly breached statutory and regulatory obligations to the ACP, undermined the integrity of the profession, decreased public trust, created the potential for patient harm, and failed to exercise professional and ethical judgement expected and required of an Alberta pharmacist. 

The exact statutes of the alleged breach, as well as the evidence presented to the tribunal are outlined in the decision of the hearing tribunal, which is available to the public. 

Galang’s hearing proceeded by admission of unprofessional conduct, by which, according to the tribunal, she also admitted to the allegations presented against her. 

It is noted in the decision of the hearing tribunal, Galang did not admit her conduct constituted a breach of ACP Code of Ethics principles, and it was struck from the allegations.

Galang has been ordered to pay $6,000 to be paid within 90 days from the date she received the hearing tribunal’s written decision. 

She has also been ordered to pay 50 per cent of the costs of the investigation and hearing to a maximum of $10,000. This will be repaid over the next 24 months from the time Galang received the written decision.

Galang’s permit to practice has been suspended for three months, with one month to be served on dates acceptable to the Complaints Director. She has been ordered to provide the Complaints Director with evidence of completing Part A of the ACP Licensee Education Program.

By John Watson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Feb 10, 2023

This item reprinted with permission from   Strathmore Times   Strathmore, Alberta

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