Trends that are reshaping the Pharmacies
With an increased focus on health and wellbeing, and new-found awareness
of the importance and complexities of vaccination programs, there are growing
opportunity for pharmacies to define themselves as central players in the new
health economy. For years, consumers have been trusting their neighborhood
pharmacy for a range of services: picking up prescriptions, buying vitamins, and
getting high-quality retail items like nappies and makeup. Increasingly, people are
also happy to rely on pharmacies for advice and medical services, from blood
pressure monitoring, to cholesterol check-ups, to strep tests, to vaccinations.
As pharmacies become service providers and expand their product ranges to
more retail items, consumers expect them to offer the same quality and range
of experiences retailers are offering: across channels, at all times, with additional
conveniences such as longer hours of operation and product expertise.
Here are five key trends reshaping the future of pharmacies
and transforming them into personalized healthcare hubs:
Pharmacists are consistently named among the most trusted professionals in the
health industry by consumers. With years of education and training as well as a
lifelong commitment to continuous professional development, these highly trained
professionals are experts in medicine and capable of helping patients with a whole
host of minor health concerns.
With this in mind, pharmacies are well positioned to take on more of a primary
healthcare role, performing patient assessments, suggesting over-the-counter
medication, and referring patients to specialists. Unlike doctors, many pharmacies
offer extended opening hours in the evenings and at weekends, which makes them
a more accessible point of call for patients that need to fit in a glucose test or blood
pressure check at the end of the working day.
To give patients the best service, pharmacies need to offer flexibility and convenience.
Giving people the ability to book appointments for several types of checkups online,
in person or on the phone, offering extended opening hours, and connecting with
doctors on behalf (and with the explicit consent) of the patient are just some of the
ways pharmacies are simplifying patients’ lives, supporting doctors, and making
health services more available to the community.