Why Independent Pharmacy is the Place to Be
The healthcare industry is admittedly more profit-driven than ever before. It’s an industry after all, and businesses need to make money at the end of the day.
Such is the case for pharmacies. It’s a perfect example of the “goods and services” concept. You pay for a prescription and that pharmacy will give you just that to live a healthier life.
But not everything has to depend on the almighty dollar. Independent pharmacy is the perfect example of providing exceptional patient care while maintaining a profit.
Though there are key differences between independent pharmacy and their chain counterparts, there is still more than meets the eye.
Here’s what separates independent pharmacy from the rest of the pact.
As the term suggests, an independent pharmacy is a one-of-a-kind establishment. They are essentially their own bosses, free from other corporate red tape. They can put their own spin of patient care, while still meeting sky-high standards.
Chains, on the other hand, are beholden to corporate policies, which can stifle creativity. And it’s creativity that the industry thrives on.
Corporate policies and other quotas can lead chain pharmacies to focus more on financials and sales rather than delivering quality patient care.
That’s not always the case, however — plenty of chain pharmacies can provide greatly personalized services (this writer should know!). But it’s much more common in independents than in chain pharmacies.
Consider going to an independent pharmacy if you’re looking to stick with one pharmacy. The more you go to the same pharmacy, the more personalized service you will receive.
Independent pharmacy ensures that you’re getting the care you need first, and then the rest will follow.
Independent pharmacy gives healthcare professionals a chance to put their stamp on patient care. Likewise, an independent pharmacy can put its own stamp on its community.
Because the average independent pharmacy are usually locally owned and operated, they are naturally a by-product of their community. Because they don’t have to adhere to arbitrary corporate guidelines, they can focus more on community impact.
Independent pharmacies ensure that their community is well informed of their health and its inner workings. Many independent pharmacies place a high premium on health literacy. They know that being healthy takes more than just relying on pills in a bottle.
Health literacy is all about informing patients about what their health truly consists of. Through personalized care and community involvement, independent pharmacy plays a substantial role in your community’s health.
Whether it’s by filling prescriptions, administering vaccines, or patient consultations, an independent pharmacy sees that its community achieves an undisputed bill of clean health.
Independent pharmacies almost always adopt a “patient first” mentality. Their less concerned with sales and figures (though that is still important) and more focused on the trajectory of your health journey.
It goes beyond standard patient care, beyond x’s and o’s for the sport-inclined readers. An independent pharmacy generally thinks about the more intangible aspects of patient care.
Instead of just telling you that your medication isn’t covered, a tech at an independent pharmacy might call your doctor and ask for a similar drug that is covered. They can call your doctor’s office for a refill request instead of just faxing it.
Patient consultations are more than just formalities. They are an integral part of your relationship with your independent pharmacist. Though they know aspects of your health through a prescription, a simple patient consultation effortlessly enhances your pharmacy-going experience.
While chain pharmacies definitely focus on delivering exceptional patient care, independent pharmacies make it their primary focus.
Let’s admit it: a big appeal of chain pharmacies is their multiple locations. Throw a stone in any direction and you’re bound to hit a Walmart, CVS, or Walgreens Pharmacy. This makes traveling more convenient.
Transferring your prescriptions from one Walmart location to another is much more simple than going from one independent pharmacy to another.
Depending on your pharmacy’s software, going to one independent pharmacy means starting with a clean slate, whereas chain pharmacies can carry over patient information from one location to another.
Even so, the pros outweigh the cons when it comes to independent pharmacies. There’s a reason why the industry is thriving.
Some of the industry’s brightest and most innovative minds reside in the independent pharmacy sector, where they can help patients their way.
Perhaps the biggest appeal of independent pharmacies is you’re bound to receive personalized care.
As mentioned earlier, independent pharmacies tend to focus more on the quality of patient care than meeting arbitrary corporate quotas. As a result, you’ll naturally receive patient that is tailored to your needs.
Picking up a diabetes medication? An independent pharmacist might suggest clinical services such as A1C testing or receiving a pneumonia vaccine. One might see this as a way for pharmacies to make money, but you’ll become a healthier version of yourself.
The more you visit the same independent pharmacy, the quicker the pharmacy staff will remember you. They’ll no longer ask for your last name but will instead jollily greet your name once you walk into the door.
Going to a pharmacy doesn’t have to feel like that dreaded dentist appointment. It should feel like a walk in the park as you continue your health journey. Independent pharmacies see that you put your best foot forward.
We can all use a little more independence. Independent pharmacies ensure that the industry stays innovative, efficient, and patient-centric. Businesses have to make money at the end of the day. But independents ensure their business and your health are always improving.
This is nothing against chain pharmacies. They provide exceptional care as well, but why not look out for the little guy? Independent pharmacies might be small, but they are a mighty part of the pharmacy industry.
Check out our Pharmacy Finder tool to find an independent pharmacy near you. Talk to the pharmacist, schedule a vaccination, or just walk around the pharmacy — you’re in great hands.