Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 31, Issue 2, pp 131–141 | Cite as

The Relationship Between Pharmacists' Tenure in the Community Setting and Moral Reasoning

  • David A. Latif


Objective: To explore the relationship between pharmacists' tenure in the community setting and their moral reasoning abilities. Design: Systematic random sample design. Setting: A large southeastern city in the United States. Participants:450 independent and chain community pharmacists identified from the state board of pharmacy list of licenced community pharmacists. Interventions: A mailed questionnaire that included a well-known moral reasoning instrument and collected demographic information. Main Outcome Measures: Moral Reasoning abilities and tenure of community pharmacists. Results: As a group, community pharmacists with greater years of tenure in community practice scored significantly lower on moral reasoning than those pharmacists with fewer years of tenure (p = 0.016). Conclusion: Four plausible explanations for the results are given including: a) a selection of lower ethical reasoners and/or an exodus of higher ethical reasoners from the community setting; b) a retrogression in the moral reasoning skills as community pharmacists obtain tenure in this setting; c) differences between the low and high moral reasoning groups may be due to a cohort effect; and d) the obtained practitioner sample may not have been representative of the population of community pharmacists.


Moral Reasoning Community Setting Main Outcome Measure Ethical Reasoner Cohort Effect 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • David A. Latif
    • 1
  1. 1.Shenandoah University, Bernard J. Dunn School of PharmacyWinchesterU.S.A.

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