ENDORSEMENT: Measure 7: ‘Yes’ to repeal pharmacy law
To hear opponents of a measure to repeal North Dakota's protectionist pharmacy law tell it, North Dakotans would be without easy access to pharmaceuticals if the measure passes. North Dakota would find itself at the mercy of Big Box retailers who...
To hear opponents of a measure to repeal North Dakota’s protectionist pharmacy law tell it, North Dakotans would be without easy access to pharmaceuticals if the measure passes. North Dakota would find itself at the mercy of Big Box retailers who don’t care a fig about personal service, they claim.
Really? If that scenario had any hint of 21st century reality in it, North Dakotans would not have ready access to food, automobiles, hardware, sporting goods, newspapers -- pick something. All those sources of goods and services have experienced significant changes in business practices and in the competitive realm in the past three decades. Businesses adjusted. Consumers responded because their choices expanded.
Measure 7, which takes aim at the only restrictive pharmacy law in the nation, is a means by which the marketplace will do what markets always do: respond to customer demand. Demand for the miracle drugs and over-the-counter medicines will not lessen if big retailers are allowed to hire pharmacists to run drug counters. Indeed, it is likely a broader array of consumer choices will benefit everyone.
North Dakotans should vote “yes” on Measure 7.
The notion the pharmacy market will be skewed by big chains doesn’t cut it. Chain store pharmacies have been operating in North Dakota for years, and more than a few local pharmacists own small chains of their own.
The primary concern has to be access to safe drugs at reasonable prices. And prices most often are determined by insurance payment limitations, not by individual pharmacies, large or small.
So, let’s open up the pharmacy market in North Dakota for the first time in more than 50 years. Protectionist laws never favor consumers. Competition always does.
Vote Yes on Measure 7.
Endorsements represent the views of Forum Communications, the Herald’s parent company. This endorsement was written by The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead.