December 19, 2012
Pharmacists Near Top of Gallup Poll on Honesty, Ethics

Washington, D.C.—Pharmacists are near the top of the list for honesty and ethical standards, according to a new Gallup poll.

Only nurses rank higher on the list of 22 professions. That means pharmacists, at number 2, outrank medical doctors, 3; dentists, 5; and even clergy, 8.

At the bottom of the list were car salespeople, with members of Congress just slightly ahead.

Asked to rate the honesty and ethical standards of pharmacists, 75% of respondents deemed those traits very high or high, 21% average, and just 3% very low or low. Nurses had 85% ratings in the very high or high category. The lowest score was 8% at the very high or high level for car salespeople, with members of Congress close at 10%.

Noting that political figures still score poorly, “these data hold better news for members of the medical profession—particularly nurses, who have topped the list all but once over the last 13 years. Pharmacists and medical doctors also do well, and both of these professions equaled or exceeded their previous high points this year,” according to the pollsters.

The results are from Gallup's November 26-29 update of the perceived honesty and ethical standards of professions. Survey respondents rated each profession on a five-point honesty and ethical scale ranging from "very high" to "very low."

The National Community Pharmacists Association issued a press release lauding the Gallup results and suggesting that government health care leaders should take note that “the trust that Americans place in their pharmacists makes these highly trained health care professionals a prime resource to help improve outcomes and reduce costs by boosting patient compliance with their prescribed medication regimen."

“Congratulations to America’s pharmacists for setting a record high in trustworthiness in Gallup’s annual survey for 2012. An impressive 75% of respondents categorized pharmacists very high/high by the honesty and ethics standard,” said NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey. “Since the audience is the American people, this ranking is a testimony to the good will generated by the patient-friendly approach of pharmacists who are accessible, responsive and take tremendous pride helping patients achieve the best health outcomes at the lowest costs.”

He urged health care decision makers to “tap further into the expertise and results pharmacists can bring to health care.”

U.S. Pharmacist Social Connect