Midtown Pharmacy takes top honors in Best Practice contest at Cardinal Health RBC 2013
SEATTLE — A pair of pharmacists from Whitsett, N.C., were the winners of a special text-to-vote competition to highlight independent pharmacy best practices at the Cardinal Health 2013 Retail Business Conference. Kasey Woods and Amy Brian of Midtown Pharmacy were chosen from among three finalists who were highlighted in videos presented at the conference in Seattle at the Washington State Convention Center, during the Aug. 9 morning general session.
Midtown Pharmacy won the competition with its Diabetes University program. (Click below to see a special video interview with Midtown Pharmacy owners Kasey Woods and Amy Brian.) The store uses a series of educational presentations and resources developed by Cardinal Health to offer once-per-month classes for diabetes education and support. The result, said Brian, who is a certified diabetes educator, is that many participants transfer their prescriptions to Midtown after participating. The program also has increased sales of diabetes supplies and helped improve medication adherence among patients in the program. Four weeks after patients complete the program, the store conducts follow-ups by phone and a further follow-up after four months to six months to check patient progress toward goals set during instruction.
“It’s important that we don’t just grab these patients, educate them for a few hours and then turn them loose,” said store co-owner Brian. “We want to provide them ongoing education so that they are constantly learning. Ultimately, this builds loyalty to our store and keeps them coming back.”
Midtown Pharmacy has successfully marketed the program — the cost of which is covered 100% by Medicare and Medicaid — by connecting with doctors’ offices for referrals, providing an overview on their website and through word-of-mouth advocacy.
Cardinal Health will donate $7,000 to the Medical University of South Carolina College of Pharmacy on behalf of Woods and Brian.
Midtown Pharmacy edged out runners-up Daniel’s Drug and Wellness Pharmacy of Guthrie, Okla., and Medicap Pharmacy No. 8004, in Marshalltown, Iowa, respectively.
Daniel’s Drug and Wellness Pharmacy won second-place for its hormone testing and treatment program, whereby it compounds hormone therapies to meet Guthrie’s growing need for customized medication. (See below to see a special video interview with Daniel’s Drug and Wellness Pharmacy owner Amy Carothers.) It couples the new service with monthly seminars for women, giving them information about hormone therapies and choices, as well as in-home and video educational counseling. The program has grown in volume from 20 to 30 compounded prescriptions per month at the onset to approximately 200 to 300 compounded prescriptions per month.
Coming in third, the Marshalltown Medicap store used Cardinal Health’s Inventory Manager to analyze dispensed medications and develop a prescription auto-fill program. (Click below to see a special video interview with Marshalltown Medicap owners Sam and Samantha Zoske.) The program has eliminated patients’ wait time for prescriptions and helped increase medication adherence, reducing inventory by 40% and inventory cost by $140,000 in the last year. About 40% to 50% of its patients are signed up for the program.
Cardinal Health also will donate $2,000 to Southwestern Oklahoma State University’s College of Pharmacy in honor of Daniel’s Drug and Wellness owner Amy Carothers, and $1,000 to Drake University’s College of Pharmacy in honor of Marshalltown Medicap owners Sam and Samantha Zoske.
The three finalists were chosen by members of Cardinal Health’s Retail Advisory Board from a field of 14 unique programs that were featured in a special publication, Independent Pharmacy Best Practice Guide: Innovating Independents 2013, that was presented to all Cardinal Health RBC attendees at this year’s event. (To download a copy, click here.) The 14 pharmacies featured in the special edition were culled from nominations from Cardinal Health’s independent pharmacy sales teams of programs that improve patient care and drive business results.
“The independent pharmacists we serve are always striving to provide high-quality, personalized care to patients while positioning their businesses to succeed,” said Steve Lawrence, SVP of independent sales for Cardinal Health. “We’re delighted to honor this year’s winner and finalists by sharing their best practices at RBC 2013, and we congratulate them for their commitment to community pharmacy excellence.”
To keep up with all the news from Cardinal Health RBC 2013, visit DrugStoreNews.com/Cardinal-Health-Retail-Business-Conference-2013.
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DSNTV: Consumer engagement and owning the customer relationship
Even though customers may only buy certain OTC categories a few times a year, for consumer healthcare brands, the opportunities to have a more meaningful relationship in the lives of their consumers has never been greater, Stefan Merlo, director of healthcare strategy, Novartis Consumer Health, told DSNTV in a special edition of DSN Executive Viewpoints.
“That’s largely important not only because it provides us with insights [about our core shopper], but also for our retailer partners. Oftentimes, we identify synergies either with other product categories we have or product categories we don’t have, and we’ll share that information with the retailers and they can use it to activate different points in the store [to target] that individual customer,” Merlo explained.
This kind of customer engagement requires a constant dialogue with the customer that is focused on the relationship versus the next transaction. “We’re not looking to sell products all the time. For example, we have a Facebook page for our Excedrin business and we have regular communication that goes on about headaches. We specialize in headaches, and we talk to [consumers] just about headaches.… And that creates an ongoing relationship — even though they might only be coming into the stores three or four times a year to buy it, we have communicated with them dozens [of times],” he said.
For more, including how Novartis Consumer Health is helping create value in a tough economy and helping retailers navigate challenges from capturing the omnichannel customer to breaking through to consumers in an age of information overload, click above to see the complete video.
DSNTV: Being everywhere the shopper wants to engage with you
If retailers and brand manufacturers want to unravel the mystery and unlock the opportunity of the omnichannel consumer, they need to “take a step back and think like the consumer,” Rhonda Johnson, chief customer officer at Merck Consumer Care, told DSNTV in a special edition of DSN Executive Viewpoints.
“The reality is the consumer gets it — they’re shopping on their iphones; they’re shopping on their ipads; they’re scanning barcodes while they’re in the store, they know what they’re doing,” she explained. “Think about the consumer and how they access information. It doesn’t have to be best price — I think a lot of people are focusing on pricing implications of consumers having access to everything. But often, it’s bout increasing their knowledge, allowing them access to information as they’re trying to figure out and [navigate] the shopping experience.”
Retailers and suppliers need “to be more inclusive of online, mobile and in-store” to capture the omnichannel customer, Johnson noted. “Ten years ago, the big buzz word was ‘surround sound.’ Well, surround sound today is being everywhere the shopper wants to engage with us.”
For more, including how Merck Consumer Care is working to create more relevance with the consumer in a tough economy, and working with retailers to move the customer relationship from a transaction-based to an engagement-based model, click below to see the complete video.