The term holistic is used frequently in medicine these days. And for good reason, it sounds nice. You’d be hard pressed to find a medical practice with the tagline, “Treating a part of you.”
Yet, the corner pharmacy does this very thing. Patient care is transactional. Come in with a valid prescription and they’ll dispense it. If you have a question for the technician or pharmacist, they’ll happily answer it. But, their approach is one of passivity.
No one should blame the traditional pharmacy for acting as a mere dispensary. The health professionals who work at chain drug stores are terribly busy. Management sees to it that they are staffed lean enough to turn a healthy profit. Oftentimes, corporate America sees the pharmacist as a highly paid retail staffer whose time must be rationed out carefully.
No knock on the pharmacist. It’s a retail culture that values drive-up window efficiency over rich personal interactions that is to blame.
We Do Things Differently
PersonalRX inverts the patient care model. We see the patient as the center of care and the pharmacy as the participant that does the heavy lifting. We coordinate monthly refills so that the patient has one less thing to worry about. Our technicians and pharmacists have longer conversations with patients and caregivers because they are evaluated by the quality, not the quantity, of their interactions.
PersonalRX is different because we always treat the whole person. Our patients take multiple medications. To service them responsibly from a clinical standpoint, it’s imperative that we understand their complete medication regimen. At PersonalRX, we dispense all prescription medications at the same time each month – pre-sorted, packed in dose packs and delivered on time. A standard pharmacist review includes reconciling any concerns with regard to contraindications and/or issues of overmedication.
CDC statistics reveal that 24 percent of Americans take three or more prescription medications regularly. Doesn’t common sense tell us that every pharmacy could do better if more time was taken to synchronize dispensing, at the very least, so that all maintenance medications are considered within the context of treating the whole person?
A Blood Vessel Walks Into A Pharmacy …
Conversely, when pharmacy interactions are done in piecemeal, the dispensing pharmacy may see the patient as someone with high blood pressure one day, a person with diabetes the next time and an individual with arthritis during another visit.
And the truth of the matter is that when you own a retail store, the goal is to get people to visit as often as possible, so there’s an advantage to dispensing one or two medications at a time. Patients who take multiple medications shouldn’t blame the corner pharmacy for being what it is, but they should take into consideration what type of pharmacy best suits their needs.
At PersonalRX we have an easy solution for treating the patient as a whole. We provide each patient with a dedicated pharmacy tech who coordinates refills and sees to it that medicine arrives before it’s needed each month. We’ve yet to find an advantage to assigning a technician to care for only a part of a patient.
When it comes to patient care, the whole is truly greater than the sum of its parts.