Independent Pharmacy vs Chain Pharmacy
Not all pharmacies are made equal. Many know large chain pharmacies such as Walgreens, CVS, and Walmart. But the hidden gems in your neighborhood are the community pharmacies.
These pharmacies are usually smaller, locally owned, and seek to provide more comprehensive healthcare beyond dispensing medications.
Visit an independent pharmacy in your community. You may find that they better suit your needs when compared to large chain pharmacies.
5 Benefits of Community Pharmacies
1. Superior and Personal Customer Service
Excellent customer service is a staple for community pharmacies. Patients are not just a number in a system. Pharmacists and other pharmacy employees will know you by name and happily greet you when you arrive.
It is easier to serve the community if we know and engage with its people. Community pharmacies want to be a part of your healthcare journey instead of only being a prescription provider.
Patients may generally experience improved health outcomes when pharmacists are more involved.
2. No Prescription Quotas
What happens behind the scenes matters for the quality of your pharmacy. Many big chains will implement “script quotas” to rate their employees.
Metrics such as how many scripts are filled per hour, day, or week are used to evaluate employees. Community pharmacies will not do this.
This practice places profits and numbers over the well-being of the customer. By removing any need for prescription quotas, we can focus on truly helping people and offering ourselves as a valuable resource in the healthcare journey.
3. Greater Involvement with the Patient
Did you know your pharmacist can help you with any questions relating to your medication? A slight stigma pharmacies have to battle is that they only exist to dispense drugs to patients. This is far from the truth!
Pharmacists spend years studying pharmacology, which studies how drugs affect living organisms. They are a great knowledge resource about the medication you are taking, more so than your doctor.
Community pharmacists enjoy providing this additional knowledge to their patients and are more willing to go the extra mile. If you have trouble with a particular medication, your pharmacist can determine why and how to fix it.
This is one of the reasons patients generally experience more outstanding health outcomes with increased involvement from their pharmacists.
4. Community Based
It is no surprise that community pharmacies are meant to serve the community. Their mission is health-based and not solely for profit.
A community pharmacist is more accessible and readily available to help their patients. ClearSpring Pharmacy did not close once during the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020. We were a resource for masks, tests, and eventually vaccines when they were developed.
Community pharmacies also provide a host of health services to help their clients.
5. Provides Additional Services
Community pharmacies provide a comprehensive approach to healthcare. Not only do we give the medications fantastic customer service, but we are capable of other services as well.
Point-of-care services are an excellent help for checking on the health of our clients. It can be challenging to set appointments with your doctor. Still, your pharmacist may be available for pregnancy, cholesterol, heart, and a1c testing.
Your pharmacist can consult and develop a plan with you to address any concerns.
Pharmacies are also great places to get regular vaccinations, such as the flu, shingles, and COVID-19 shots. Additionally, community pharmacies will provide compression stocking fittings and consultations for supplements and over-the-counter medications.
Choose Your Community Pharmacy
At the end of the day, community pharmacies will prioritize the health of their clients. They will go the extra mile, treat you like a human, and treat their employees better so they are more capable of serving you.
Our goal is to provide fantastic healthcare and customer service. Getting your prescriptions from a community pharmacy will support a small local business with a patient-first objective.