Every day, pharmacists are on the frontlines of patient care — providing information and resources, valuable face-to-face counseling as well as dispensing the medicines that patients need to manage their health and well-being. During COVID-19, pharmacists’ role as counselors, educators and advocates to patients has never been more critical.
Distributors recognize the vital role pharmacies play in local communities across the country, and that is why we have spent years building relationships and expanding our service offerings to ensure pharmacists can focus on serving patients and growing their businesses. Distributors are committed to supporting local pharmacies each day, but during the COVID-19 crisis, HDA members, such as Value Drug, are going the extra mile to ensure the full range of medicines and supplies they need are delivered safely, securely and reliably.
Across industries, businesses have been forced to adapt given the uncertainty presented by COVID-19. Value Drug and its member pharmacies are doing this by leveraging new technology and strong relationships.
Value Drug provides independent pharmacies with a range of enhanced clinical programs and services that they can then offer to customers. This includes lab testing, telemedicine solutions, medication management therapy, immunizations and a full complement of long-term care offerings — all increasingly important, given the unique environment we are in today.
To replace patient consultations that would typically happen in person, Value Drug is now providing logistics and technological expertise to help member pharmacies leverage telemedicine to consult patients remotely. The Value Health Center’s Telemedicine Program enables patients to not only be within easy reach of a physician, but to consult behavioral health therapists and registered dieticians quickly and conveniently, all from the safety of their home. With telemedicine offerings, local pharmacies can serve as the central healthcare resource in their communities, meeting patients’ prescription, over-the-counter and medical supply needs all in one place.
Value Drug has long provided pharmacies the ability to process in-store testing capabilities for conditions like strep throat, common flu and anemia. As, states such as Pennsylvania, begin allowing independent pharmacies to conduct diagnostic COVID-19 tests, Value Drug will play an important role in helping independent pharmacies expand testing for frontline healthcare workers, first responders and other essential workers.
COVID-19 also is changing the way Value Drug reaches and supports its own customers.
To ensure the health and safety of employees and pharmacy staff, the company is streamlining purchasing processes and check-in procedures at the store level. They also have researched and provided updated online marketplaces to help customers find and acquire the inventory they require while minimizing or eliminating the need for company representatives to visit physical stores. Value Drug’s pharmacy experience team also is thinking creatively and working with customers to build virtual planograms for new store layouts incorporating many of the additional changes being mandated and developed due to this pandemic.
In these unprecedented times, local pharmacists are key community members, working tirelessly to counsel and educate patients as well as keep the members of their staff safe. Regardless of the challenges that we face, distributors like Value Drug are committed to supporting their local pharmacy partners and ensuring patients maintain access to the vital medicines they need.
For additional HDA materials and pandemic response resources, visit: www.hda.org/covid19.