Of particular concern with Internet pharmacies is the ease with which people, youth in particular, can obtain controlled substances (e.g., Vicodin , generically known as hydrocodone ) via the Internet without a prescription issued by a doctor/practitioner who has an established doctor-patient relationship. Internet pharmacies (also known as online pharmacies) are also recommended to some patients by their physicians if they are homebound. Some customers consider this to be more convenient and private method rather than traveling to a community drugstore where another customer might overhear about the drugs that they take.

For example, if a drug manufacturer only provides a drug as a tablet, a compounding pharmacist might make a medicated lollipop that contains the drug. Since the emergence of modern clinical pharmacy, ambulatory care pharmacy practice has emerged as a unique pharmacy practice setting. The pharmacist must also monitor for potential drug interactions, adverse drug reactions, and assess patient drug allergies while designing and initiating a drug therapy plan.

Hospital pharmacies usually stock a larger range of medications, including more specialized medications, than would be feasible in the community setting. Pharmacies are typically required to have a pharmacist on-duty at all times when open. Community pharmacies usually consist of a retail storefront with a dispensary where medications are stored and dispensed.

It is the community pharmacy where the dichotomy of the profession exists—health professionals who are also retailers. He devoted in fact a whole volume to simple drugs in The Canon of Medicine Of great impact were also the works by al-Maridini of Baghdad and Cairo , and Ibn al-Wafid (1008-1074), both of which were printed in Latin more than fifty times, appearing as De Medicinis universalibus et particularibus by ‘ Mesue ’ the younger, and the Medicamentis simplicibus by ‘ Abenguefit ‘. Peter of Abano (1250-1316) translated and added a supplement to the work of al-Maridini under the title De Veneris. Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (Abulcasis) (936-1013) pioneered the preparation of medicines by sublimation and distillation His Liber servitoris is of particular interest, as it provides the reader with recipes and explains how to prepare the `simples’ from which were compounded the complex drugs then generally used.

In this highly stable hierarchy, the pharmacists—and even pharmacist assistants—were assigned status superior to all others in health-related fields such as physicians and acupuncturists. Pharmacy in China dates at least to the earliest known Chinese manual, the Shennong Bencao Jing (The Divine Farmer’s Herb-Root Classic), dating back to the 1st century AD. It was compiled during the Han dynasty and was attributed to the mythical Shennong Earlier literature included lists of prescriptions for specific ailments, exemplified by a manuscript “Recipes for 52 Ailments”, found in the Mawangdui , sealed in 168 BC.