Pharmacists' perspectives on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

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Passed in 2010, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) resulted in significant changes to the health care system in the United States (US). Though general population surveys reveal the fractious political debate surrounding the law, insights on pharmacists' perspectives on the PPACA are lacking in the literature.


The objectives of this study were to determine pharmacists' perspectives on the PPACA and determine whether pharmacists' demographic and practice-related characteristics and political beliefs influence their perspectives on the PPACA.


This study was conducted using a descriptive, cross-sectional design. Study data were collected with a self-administered online questionnaire distributed to 21,769 registered pharmacists in five states.


A total of 1127 completed surveys were received (5.6% response rate). Roughly 37% of pharmacists reported that they understood the major provisions of the PPACA although most (89%) respondents agreed that understanding such policies is important for practicing pharmacy. Just over half (50.6%) of respondents did not support the PPACA while 47.7% supported the legislation. Political orientation, age, gender, and race were found to be significantly related to pharmacists' perspectives on the PPACA.


Respondent pharmacists' perceptions of the PPACA appear to be related to political orientation and demographic characteristics. Given that pharmacists will be impacted by the implementation of the PPACA and are so accessible to the public, additional information on health care policy and PPACA should be provided to pharmacists.

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