From Future of Pharmacy

The Pharmacist from Whoville

WHO’s your pharmacist? (Not where is your pharmacy…)

The questions are always the same.

  1. Name?
  2. Date of birth?
  3. Which pharmacy do you use?

When people discuss other aspects of the healthcare universe it sounds like the phone book from a Dr. Seuss story: Who’s your endocrinologist? Who’s your cardiologist? Who is handling the procedure? Who are you seeing for rehab?

Can we pharmacists get a who?

Truth be told, it’s our own fault nobody gives a who. At the very least we haven’t helped ourselves very much. For a long time now we have been content to earn our salaries and be relegated to being highly educated vending machines. We have allowed the most accessible and in many instances more engaged touch point of the healthcare process to become commoditized. I know… there are a lot of us who have been actively trying to keep that from happening. Regardless, that is where perception has gone. And we all know perception is reality.

So how do we change that reality?  How do we get our who back? I think the answer is threefold: Read more

Get off your stool and pull up a chair…We’re about to have a seat at the table.

Pharm 2 Table, 2015. It starts here.

I knew I wanted to be a pharmacist since I was in high school. I entered into the profession just as the sea change in health care was on the horizon. Baby boomers were no longer booming but looming. “Biotech” was morphing into “Life Science” and redefining its relationship to Wall Street. Independent pharmacy was faced with the choice of being either Mom&Pop Mart or Wal-Mart. And I, as a fresh-faced wanna-be pharmacist, first heard how in the new health care landscape we “didn’t have a seat at the table.” Read more

Counterintuitive… or is it? Premium care leads to lower costs, higher revenue, or…

… “Fail fast, fail cheap – applying the entrepreneur model to 21st century pharmacy.”

If you participate in a Startup Weekend, work with a business incubator, or spend much time at all around 21st century entrepreneurs, you will learn quickly that the model for success in this new economy is rooted in failure.

Oxymoronic?  Counterintuitive? Countermoronic??? Maybe. It also happens to work.

everyone-will-become-entrepreneur-610When I say that the model is rooted in failure, what that means is the mantra of the entrepreneur is “fail fast, fail cheap.” This actually isn’t a new idea. It’s the same notion that Thomas Edison took when subscribing to the notion that every failure of the new fangled electric light bulb was just one step closer to the solution. The trick was to accomplish these “failures” as cheaply as possible and spend a minimal amount of time doing so. The question is, how can we apply this model to 21st century pharmacy?

Ok, I know what you’re thinking. “But Pharmacist Jamie… we’re pharmacists, not entrepreneurs. We’re not founding tech companies… we’re not developing  apps that let you put things ‘on the line‘… we are health care providers, not entrepreneurs.”

Yeah. Let me know how that works out for you. In the meantime I’ve got a suggestion: Read more

Would you like fries with that?

I vacillated long and hard about writing this post, much less it being my first post on my new website. Truth is, there’s a good chance it’s going to tick some of you off. And I say “tick” because I promised Google this would be a “PG” website.

We pharmacists today, in general, bemoan the fact that we’ve been relegated to second-class citizenship in the nation of health care providers. We like the salaries we draw. For the most part we like the hours we keep. We do not like how far we have fallen in terms of value within the patient’s hierarchy of trusted treatment experts.

It has struck me, however, that the problem doesn’t really exist with patient perception but rather with our value proposition. Health care and patient management have undergone tremendous evolution over last 30 years in practically every part of the sector. Every sector except the pharmacy. Read more