Offering Prescription delivery services could set you apart from the competition in tough times. There are many challenges both patient and independent pharmacy are facing today. “One of the biggest threats to community pharmacy is the mail order pharmacy. Because they are owned by the PBM, they can essentially force patients to use mail order by refusing to pay for their medications. But they also gain many customers just on the notion of convenience – because they can deliver their medications to the patient’s door”. Many independent pharmacies are asking themselves what they can do to compete.
Prescription Delivery Services may not be for every pharmacy so it is best to do your research on your community to ensure this would benefit both you and your patients. Independent pharmacies like The Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy locations have been offering delivery services for years.
Tips and thoughts to consider before getting started with prescription delivery services.
Patient Benefits to Pharmacy Delivery Services:
Executed prescription regimen
Many patients have conditions that don’t allow them to drive and pharmacies offering delivery services are critical for them to receive needed medications. Many pharmacies have found that by offering these services they have even begun to attract new customers.
Factors to consider planning for prescription delivery services:
- Know Your State Laws and Requirements
- Research Your Community: Would the surrounding area benefit from this service?
- Analyze Your Patients
- Do you have a lot of homebound customers in which other people come in and pick up prescriptions for them?
- Do you have patients who have a hard time staying on track with their refills? Offering delivery service could help them adhere to their prescription regimen.
- Survey Your Geographical Area: Can you service a rural area that has no pharmacy to service them? Are you in a populated area and could deliver to a whole street block and eliminate long lines in your pharmacy.
- Set Yourself Apart: Are there other pharmacies in your area offering this service? If there is, you may want to offer it to compete with them but, if there is no other delivery service in your area this could be your competitive advantage.
“Our small pharmacy can’t afford to do delivery services”.
With today’s shrinking reimbursements, this may be a common thought. There is no way your pharmacy can take on an extra expense and this may be true for your pharmacy because prescription delivery services aren’t for every pharmacy. It is best to do your research on your community and have a clear plan but, before you write it off here are some tips that are helping other pharmacies incorporate this service.
Tips To Help You Integrate Prescription Delivery Service Into Your Pharmacy
1. Instate a delivery charge – a small fee may be a small price to pay for the ease and their items right to their doorstep.
2. Set a delivery service distance parameter.
3. Offer free delivery service with a required minimum purchase of over-the-counter products.