March 2009

Indie pharmacy’s strong roots bolster industry amid downturn

Independent pharmacy has been slammed hard by the continuing slide in prescription-dispensing profits, a dismal economy and powerful chain store competitors. But with their strong ties to local communities and the patients they serve, most are weathering the storm and may emerge stronger than ever. That’s the hopeful prediction from pharmacy leaders and advocates, and there’s evidence to back it up. “Community pharmacy is on the move,” asserted Bruce Roberts, EVP and CEO of the National Community Pharmacists Association. He pledged at the organization’s annual meeting for independent pharmacists last fall that “community pharmacy will not be an afterthought in the healthcare reform debate.” Click here



APCI targets members’ needs for success
One of the reasons the American Pharmacy Cooperative Inc. has been successful is because its board of directors is actively involved in setting the goals and objectives of the organization and “making sure everything the organization does is focused on making its members successful,” according to Tim Hamrick. Click here

CARE Pharmacies expands reach beyond its legislative backyard
Dispensing prescriptions for more than 40 Congressional leaders in just one of its Washington, D.C.-area stores, CARE Pharmacies serves as an ideal touchstone on the real benefits delivered by community pharmacy. Click here

EPIC banks that independents drive innovation
One of the unique aspects of EPIC is its deep roots in building a consumer brand that touts the advantages of locally owned drug stores. To help accomplish this goal, Angelo Voxakis, president and CEO, said that in 2007 EPIC invested $2 million in consumer advertising to support its 650 primary members. Click here

ABC’s Good Neighbor Pharmacy operations wields growing national brand prowess
As parent company AmerisourceBergen merged more of its old Family Pharmacy network of independent drug stores and store-support services into its resurgent Good Neighbor Pharmacy operations and marketing umbrella… Click here

Health Mart, more than 2,000 strong, building franchise’s drawing power
In late 2008, retail pharmacy’s fastest-growing franchise for independent owner-operators blew past a significant milestone with the addition of its 2,000th drug store member. Click here

IPC taps PBM expertise of new leadership
With 3,300 members, the Independent Pharmacy Cooperative is the largest of the independent pharmacy organizations. Click here

Cardinal bolsters retail toolkit for Leader-brand independents
If there’s an independent pharmacy in your market area with a Leader Pharmacy logo on the storefront, don’t be fooled by the store’s modest footprint or the folksy, mom-and-pop image it may project. Click here

MSI delivers specialized services, purchasing power
In its 41-year history, Medicine Shoppe International has become one of the most widespread names in the retail pharmacy business, with franchises as far away as Taiwan, India and the Middle East. Click here

PBA Health’s operating and marketing efficiency leads to overall growth
Since 2006 PBA Health has grown from slightly more than 1,000 members to 1,800, making it the fastest-growing major pharmacy group, according to Nick Smock, CEO of the Kansas City, Mo.-based cooperative. Click here

United Drugs’ size to double with APC merger
United Drugs and the American Pharmacy Cooperative on Feb. 23 announced that the organizations’ boards of directors voted to merge. If the merger is approved, the new group’s membership will exceed 2,000. Click here



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