Independent pharmacies are an integral part of the community that they are a part of. They offer many services that are tailored to the community that they serve.
You may think your local independent pharmacy is just like any other retail pharmacy in town. However, the differences between the two are surprisingly vast. While both fill prescriptions, independent pharmacies often provide more services, such as compounded medications, vaccinations, and health improvement services. Owners of these pharmacies are often involved in community activities too, adding to the betterment of the community. These services are what differentiate your local independent pharmacy from other retail pharmacies.
Customer service is something all pharmacies, and businesses in general, put a great emphasis on. While large retailers do focus on customer service, they are unable to tailor their approach like an independent pharmacy can. Large retail pharmacies offer services that work for the whole company and not necessarily for the local community they are servicing. Independent pharmacies, on the other hand, get to know you and the community they serve. This allows independent pharmacies to offer services and products that reflect the needs and values of the customers they interact with regularly. This is the biggest difference between a chain pharmacy and a compounding pharmacy.
At Smith-Caldwell Drug Store, some of the services we offer include blood pressure screenings, chronic condition management, and vaccinations against the flu, pneumonia, shingles, and other preventable diseases. We also offer a drive-thru, the option to use your own in-house charge account, and personal one-on-one assistance with insurance issues and navigation. While your health is our number one priority, other benefits of our customer service include bridal and gift registry, a coffee shop for your enjoyment, and a free delivery service—things that most retail pharmacies cannot offer.
For some people, manufactured drugs are not able to meet all their health care needs. Maybe you have an allergy to an inactive ingredient in the medication you need to take, or you are unable to swallow the medication that only comes in a tablet dosage form. Independent pharmacies like Smith-Caldwell Drug Store can provide compounding services to assist with your needs.
Through our state-of-the-art sterile compounding laboratory, our pharmacists are able to help with a variety of medication needs whereas retail stores are not. Here are just a few services we offer for your compound medication needs:
- Alternative dosage forms such as lozenges, liquids, sprays, and suppositories
- Alternative medication flavoring
- Sugar-free and preservative-free formulas
- Veterinary formulas
- Commercially unavailable dosages
- Drive-thru for pickup
- In-house charge accounts
- Personal one-on-one assistance with insurance navigation
Compounding pharmacies service an important need that most retail pharmacies cannot meet. Nothing is more frustrating than being unable to take the medication you need due to an allergy, swallowing difficulties, or ineffectiveness.
Aid in Healthy Lifestyle
Pharmacists are trained to counsel and support patients in order to help them live a healthy lifestyle. Using one pharmacy for all your healthcare needs is not only a time saver, but also a huge health benefit. Using more than one pharmacy can be dangerous as the databases do not mingle and your pharmacist needs access to all of your prescription history to make a safe assessment of risks. When you utilize one pharmacy, our pharmacists are able to check for drug interactions, provide counsel on appropriate drug therapy, and help you manage chronic conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
The American Diabetes Association reports that in 2015, over 30.13 million Americans had diabetes. It is estimated that in 2017, the cost of treating diabetes was $327 billion. One study conducted by JMCP reports that pharmacist intervention improves patients’ ability to manage their diabetes, particularly A1c. A1c is a blood test that looks at a patient’s blood glucose over a 3 month period. Most doctors will want a patient’s A1c to be less than 7%. At Smith-Caldwell Drug Store, we offer the following services which can help improve your A1c, and your overall diabetes management.
Blood pressure screenings: Controlling your blood pressure is an important part of your diabetes care. Diabetes can be damaging to your kidneys, and high blood pressure can contribute to this damage. As such, it is vital to know your blood pressure numbers. We can provide screenings so that you know what your numbers are, and just as importantly, what those numbers mean. We can also work with you to find ways to improve those numbers, such as weight loss tips, exercise, and reducing the amount of sodium in your diet.
High cholesterol counseling: Diabetics are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease. Improving your cholesterol, along with your diabetes control, can improve your health. Our pharmacists are here to help you understand your numbers, how you can improve them, and any drug-related questions you may have.
Smoking cessation: Smoking can make managing your diabetes more difficult. The staff at Smith-Caldwell can counsel you on the different options available to help you kick your smoking habit. They can answer any questions about products available, and support programs to change your lifestyle.
Another aspect of a healthy lifestyle is vaccinations. Vaccinations protect against infections like the flu, pneumonia, and shingles. Recommendations for vaccinations from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) include:
- Flu: Everyone over the age of 6 months
- Shingles: Healthy adults over the age of 50 years old
- Pneumonia: For adults over the age of 65 years old and other younger adults with certain disease states like asthma or COPD
Receiving recommended vaccinations on time can help keep a community healthy. Our pharmacists can address any concerns you may have about vaccination schedules, side effects to the vaccinations, and when it may not be appropriate to receive a particular vaccination.
Independent pharmacies do more than just fill prescriptions. They are an important part of a community’s wellness. Contact Smith-Caldwell Drug Store (501) 404-2740 today for all your prescription and wellness needs.