Honing in on caregiver needs
Cardinal Health has been strategically focusing on reaching family caregivers with several pharmacy solutions and, recently, a caregiver panel at Cardinal Health RBC 2016. Drug Store News had the opportunity to talk to Christi Pedra, SVP marketing and consumer solutions at Cardinal Health, about the upcoming caregiver panel.
Drug Store News: What made you focus on caregivers?
Christi Pedra, SVP marketing and consumer solutions at Cardinal Health: It’s projected that 45 million adults in the United States will provide unpaid care to an adult or a child in the course of a year, and in the next few decades, the demand for family caregivers is expected to rise by 85%. It’s more than just the numbers that matter. Caregivers are our mothers, our sisters, friends, co-workers, neighbors and consumers in community pharmacies. They make up a vast majority of our communities, and they are seeking support. We feel strongly that they can find the level of support they need within their community pharmacies; there they can find specialized care for their loved ones and for themselves.
Cardinal Health is helping to ensure our customers are equipped with the right information and insights to help them provide optimal care for their communities. Understanding more about who shops at community pharmacies is a critical step in informing business strategy; the more we understand their customer-base, the better we can help them market appropriately and increase foot-traffic in their stores. Through extensive research, we learned more about the needs of caregivers, a key audience for community pharmacies. I encourage all RBC guests to attend the caregiver panel during the general session, Saturday, July 23. I will host both customers and caregivers on the main stage.
DSN: What will customers take away from the panel?
Pedra: Our hope is that we can share some valuable insights into the challenges caregivers face and how community pharmacies are perfectly positioned to connect with these individuals to provide them care beyond the counter. Often times, caregivers are supporting two generations. They could be working moms with their own kids who need help managing the health of everyone in the family. Or they could be a single, young man looking after an aging relative. The composition of nuclear and extended families has dramatically changed and so have their needs for care. Understanding these factors is imperative for community pharmacists because caregivers are the ones coming into their pharmacies to pick up prescriptions — and it’s a huge opportunity for our customers.
DSN: In addition to the panel at RBC, how else is Cardinal Health leading this conversation?
Pedra: We offer a host of solutions such as MedSync Advantage, Dispill Multi-dose Packaging and Cardinal Health Hospital Quality at Home products that can help our community pharmacy customers support caregivers. We will highlight these solutions within the showcase with a caregiver icon so customers can easily identify caregiver support tools and resources.
Also, we recently launched a “Voices of Care” Facebook caregiver community. The page offers advice and support for caregivers and is a place where our community pharmacists can hear directly from caregivers. The page also operates as a best practice tool for addressing caregivers on social media. Caregivers and pharmacists can access the site at Facebook.com/VoicesofCare/.
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