Code of Professional Ethics of Estonian Pharmacists

The Code of Professional Ethics of Estonian Pharmacists is based in the principles of the Pharmacists` Code of Ethics adopted by the Council International Pharmacy Federation on 5 September 1997.

The General Meeting of the Estonian Pharmacists` Association on 26 May 2000 adopted the Code of Professional Ethics of Estonian Pharmacists.

In the present document the term “pharmacist” is used to denote a person having secondary or higher professional education in the field of pharmacy.

A pharmacist is a health care professional whose first duty is to act in the interests of a customer of the pharmacy (patient) within the limits of the current legislation.
He/she shall not delay implementing public laws or regulations enacted.

A pharmacist shall pay equal attention to all customers of the pharmacy (patients). He/she shall respect each persons right to live and to choose his/her own OTC medicines and alternative treatment methods. At the same time, a pharmacist shall be responsible for providing the customer with true information, which will help him/her make the choice.
A pharmacist shall respect a person’s freedom to choose the pharmacy to which he/she takes his/her custom.

A pharmacist shall serve people needing help, taking into account their personal characteristics, hearing them out and trying to understand them irrespective of their cultural background, age, gender or social status.

The interests of a customer shall be placed above the economic interests of the pharmacy. It is the pharmacists` duty to provide the patient with a medicine even if it is unprofitable for the pharmacy.

A pharmacist shall be guided in his/her work by good business practices and adhere to fair methods of competition. He/she shall not make deals or influence third persons (doctors, nurses, veterinarians etc.) with material incentives so that they would bias patients in their choice of a pharmacy.
Co-operation of a pharmacist with doctors and other medical workers shall be aimed at providing better service to a customer of the pharmacy (patient) and not at personal material gain.

A pharmacists` professional advice shall be impartial. He/she shall be responsible for giving correct information to a customer (doctor etc.). The information shall not favor some companies, while placing other companies, which render similar services, in an unfavorable light.

A pharmacist shall co-operate with colleagues from other pharmacies. He/she shall avoid any action or inaction, which could damage the honor, dignity or credibility of the profession. He/she shall not use expressions, which could diminish third persons respect for his/her colleagues. He/she shall help a colleague to avoid aberrations from professional ethics caused by inexperience or oversight.

A pharmacist shall respect a private individual right to confidentiality. Information concerning a customers (patients) health, medicines used, methods of treatment etc., which was obtained in the course of professional activity, may be disclosed to third persons only with the consent of the patient or his/her trustee, except in cases when it is in his/her own or public interest.

By his/her work, a pharmacist shall promote correct and safe use of medicines, try to prevent willful misuse of medicines and may refuse to dispense medicines to persons who purchase medicines obvious narcotic or malevolent purposes.

In order to ensure quality service and information, a pharmacist shall participate in training programs and improve his/her professional knowledge and skill on his/her own.

A pharmacist shall ensure pharmaceutical care (help) to people even when the pharmacy is closed, informing them on another pharmacy, which is still open.

FIP Code of Ethics