August 25, 2020

Getting Personal with Yvonne Nicholson


Yvonne joined our company in the spring of 2016. She quickly became known as the person you turn to when you want something done right, without needing to ask a second time. If you work in a fast-paced environment – and need a zillion things done at the same time – then you know how great it is to have an “Yvonne.”

Four and half years later, she’s our Manager of Client Services and Leader of the Onboarding team. Neither of these titles capture the scope of her contributions. Yvonne is the one you turn to when onboarding a patient with 18 medications and a lot of complexity. She’s the Michael Jordan of patient onboarding, capable of going coast to coast and sinking the winning bucket! Here’s the interview.

Of the seven core values we share at PersonalRX, do you have a favorite?
It’s a tie between Teamwork and Compassion. No one can do all the things we do single-handed. When I have a patient whose onboarding needs to be expedited, I know that I can depend on Serena or Sonja to help make it happen. They both have a ton on their plate already, but teamwork is a value they share wholeheartedly.

And everything we do is driven by compassion.  Compassion for our patients and their families; compassion for the caregivers and case managers who help them, and compassion for all the healthcare professionals who pour themselves into their work.

Are you working on any new projects?
This time of year, I help school parents register their children for the boarding schools we service. It’s something I do year round, but it’s a new school year and that always makes it feel  like a new project.

How long have you been at PersonalRX?
Four years.  It’s a running joke that Larry, our CEO, tells people that I’ve been here seven years. I think it’s because we’ve had some long years, so it feels that way.

What personal touch do you bring to your work?
One of my jobs is to help patients who need special attention with onboarding. I have my own way of doing it because I started with the company before we began dividing the onboarding responsibilities. So, instead of passing a new patient to our PCC (patient care coordinator) team to handle prescription acquisition, I’ll contact the doctors and pharmacies myself to get their prescriptions.

When I’m onboarding a patient who needs expediting or special attention, I like to handle the whole process myself so I know for sure that the patient will get their medicine as early as I’ve promised.

Outside of work, how has COVID-19 changed your life in 2020?
My daughters, age 17 and 13,  are both high-performing athletes. At first, I’ll admit that I enjoyed having a break from spending most of my free time nights and weekends at track practice and track meets. But, now I miss it. One thing I miss is walking around the track with other parents during practice. It was a nice way to get fresh air and a bit of exercise.

We were supposed to be in Florida and Virginia this summer, but one was cancelled by USATF (USA Track and Field), and we decided not to attend the other competition due to the risk of Covid.  My younger daughter hopes to compete in the Olympics in California (following the Olympic games originally scheduled for this summer).

How do you describe your job to friends/family?
I explain that I really help people manage their medications better. Before coming to PersonalRX, I worked in the home care industry, and I saw people suffer due to poor medication management. I know firsthand how important it is that we do more for people who need the help. 

You often speak with care managers, nurses and doctors? Do you notice any common traits about these health professionals?
Most are extremely attentive to the needs of their patients. I speak with certain care managers on a regular basis, and when I relay a problem, they are quick to pay a visit, get involved and resolve the issue.

What’s challenging about your job?
It’s not cookie-cutter. Everyday is different because high priority issues arise and suddenly what I planned to work on is put aside until we resolve the most important and/or timely issues of the day.

What’s special about PersonalRX?
I say this a lot, because I hear it a lot – “It’s refreshing to get someone on the phone.” The fact that a patient, a family member or a health professional can call us and get a live person on the phone with ease that’s unique in this day and age. Not just in pharmacy, but in any sizable business. 

What do you admire most about your co-workers?
Their ability and readiness to step in and help.  We all have individual tasks that weigh on us, but there really is a commitment to teamwork – to putting personal tasks aside to help the common good, when necessary.  This is true with someone like Gina, who heads up quality assurance dept. She may get a call from a patient who asks for me, but if she can help them she will – and in doing so – they get what they need faster – and I’m freed up to complete the projects in front of me.

What are you known for around the pharmacy?
I truly have no idea.  Hopefully something good!

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