The widespread use of pharmaceuticals in both human and animal populations, and the resultant contamination of surface waters from the outflow of water treatment facilities is an issue of growing concern. This has raised the need for analytical methods that can both perform rapid sample analysis and overcome the limitations of conventional analysis procedures, such as multistep workflows and tedious procedures. Coated blade spray (CBS) is a solid-phase microextraction based technique that enables the direct-to mass-spectrometry analysis of extracted compounds via the use of limited organic solvent to desorb analytes and perform electrospray ionization. This paper documents how CBS can be applied for the concomitant tandem mass spectrometric (MS/MS) analysis of nine pharmaceuticals in treated wastewater. The total analysis times of less than 11 min provided limits of detection lower than 50 ng L-1 for all target compounds in river water. The CBS methodology was then compared to a conventional solid-phase extraction technique for the analysis of the final effluent of six wastewater treatment facilities. The experimental results strongly suggest that CBS offers scientists a viable alternative method for analyzing water samples that is both rapid and relatively solvent-free.