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The following is a general review of Kentucky pharmacy law. It should not be relied on for a specific legal problem or issue. For that, you are referred to the specific written law and an attorney. In some, but not all following areas, the statutory or regulatory citation has been added.


The Kentucky Board of Pharmacy is an administrative agency that is part of the executive branch of the state government. The Board consists of six members, appointed by the governor. Though playing no part in the selection process, the state pharmacy associations may submit lists with suggestions for board membership. Five members are pharmacists; one is a citizen at large. All must be in good standing with the board, must be Kentucky residents, and no two pharmacist members may be from the same county. Members serve a term of four years and may be reappointed for a second four-year term. The Board must elect a president annually but only such other officers as the Board deems necessary. Any officer may serve in that capacity for two years. The Board must meet at least four times a year. Four members constitute a quorum.

Duties: The board is authorized to

  • set time and place for examinations, at least two exams yearly

  • approve colleges of pharmacy

  • promulgate administrative regulations pertaining to pharmacists, interns, technicians, pharmacies, wholesale distributors, and manufacturers

  • schedule and conduct hearings

  • issue and renew licenses

  • investigate complaints

  • employ an executive director. The only requirement to be an executive director is that this person must be a pharmacist.

Complaints to the Board

Complaints may be oral or written from any source (layman, customer, another pharmacist, law enforcement). Upon receipt of a complaint, the Board shall instruct its staff to conduct an investigation. Recommendations following an investigation shall be a letter of reprimand or the issuance of a formal complaint, order, and notice of hearing (though not listed, it is assumed the matter could also be dropped).

  • Step 1. Agreed Order: Most of Kentucky’s complaints against pharmacists are handled through these orders. The pharmacist receives a written agreement which describes his action(s) that purportedly violated pharmacy law, states the law violated, and the punishment for the violation. The pharmacist is given time to investigate the matter or seek legal counsel. If the pharmacist agrees, they sign the AO, and it is submitted to the board for final approval and signature of the current president of the board.

  • Step 2. Administrative Conference: Pharmacist, attorney (if desired), executive director, and inspector who did investigation.

  • Step 3. Settlement Conference: Settlement conference between the pharmacist’s attorney and the board’s attorney may be requested and held in an attempt to resolve the complaint.

  • Step 4. Hearings: A hearing officer presides and has authority to rule on all ...

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