How Community Pharmacists Can Respond to Industry Disruption

Precipitated by Amazon’s acquisition of PillPack, Rebecca Chater recently discussed strategies for community pharmacists facing disruption in their industry. In her article for Pharmacy Times, Chater suggests that pharmacists should implement new technologies and emphasize the role of personal engagement in order to differentiate.

The great thing about many pharmacy technologies is that they don’t replace the role of the community pharmacist, but rather, they enhance it. For example, pharmacists play a key role in helping their patients with medicine management. Chater suggests that community pharmacists look into technologies that help improve communication, adherence, and care during transitions.

While Amazon’s PillPack certainly offers convenience, it falls short in other ways, such as with clinical engagement. Chater suggests that community pharmacists strive to differentiate themselves in these areas. For example, many patients require ongoing evaluations due to complex and changing prescription combinations—community pharmacists can offer help here that is beyond the scope of services such as PillPack.

Chater’s overall advice boils down to this: it’s impossible to tell what the effects and scope of future disruption will be. Community pharmacists should take their focus off of perceived threats and instead put their efforts into assessing the value they bring and seeking methods to differentiate their practices.

For more details, read the article in full at Pharmacy Times.