By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
On November 19, 2022, the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) was hit with a proposed class action lawsuit after falsely reporting that individuals had failed the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX). This is reportedly the second year in a row the NABP had mistakenly informed hundreds of pharmacy graduates that they failed their pharmacy board examination when, in fact, they passed.
The Importance of the NAPLEX.
For many pharmacists, a passing score on the NAPLEX examination is critical to their license to practice. NABP’s website states, “The NAPLEX is an important part of the licensure process.” Failure to pass the examination may damage a reputation and cause loss of residency and employment opportunities. This case stresses that NAPLEX is the culmination of the academic careers of those who have received a doctor of pharmacy degree and are about to advance into their professional lives.
“A passing score often confirms a job contract, residency, or other opportunities,” the complaint reads. “A failing score, however, leads not only to trauma and distress but also to demotions or even a rescinded job offers [sic] or residencies. The trauma and distress that came with [candidates] being told they had failed cannot be understated.”
The Significance of This Case.
The scoring error impacted the test results of over 200 people who took the NAPLEX between July 30, 2022, through October 26, 2022. NABP initially informed these people that they had failed the examination. However, the filing said it took the NABP roughly two months to inform test takers of the test-scoring mistakes. The NABP issued a statement on their website; read it here.
The Second Year Running.
This is not the NABP’s first failure to properly score the NAPLEX. In 2021, after implementing its new pass-fail scoring method, it reportedly published incorrect test results for more than 400 students. As a result, some were told they failed when they passed, while others who failed were wrongly told that they passed. Therefore, the NABP knew about the problems with the NAPLEX scoring system since the same thing happened to more than 400 students last year, the lawsuit relays.
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Rizzi, Corrado. “‘Pharmageddon’: National Association of Boards of Pharmacy Sued Over Second Time Issuing False Failing NAPLEX Scores.” ClassAction.org. (November 19, 2022). Web.
Stokes, Patrick. “Hundreds Who Failed Pharmacy Boards Actually Passed.” (November 19, 2022). Web.
About the Author: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law? He is the President and Managing Partner of The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. www.TheHealthLawFirm.com The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Ave. Suite 1000, Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620 or Toll-Free: (888) 331-6620.
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