seeks to design, build wellness centers in pharmacies

SAN FRANCISCO announced Thursday a series of store-of-the-future-type pilot programs that will be showcased here beginning this summer. The new nonprofit is working to design and build turnkey wellness centers in retail pharmacy locations.

Each center will include an educational component with both live and DVD-based classes, as well as healthcare professionals on hand to offer advice and guidance and to supervise educational events. The centers will be staffed by a variety of healthcare professionals, including pharmacists, qualified graduate school students, advice nurses, aestheticians, nutritionists and herbalists. Most of the wellness centers will also feature a variety of high margin natural products including supplements, body care products, beauty products and foods as well as health related books.

“We are building on the widespread popularity in the San Francisco area for Elephant Pharmacy, which was essentially a store-of-the-future pilot program,” stated Stuart Skorman, founder of that Elephant Pharmacy as well as “A variety of organizations including academic institutions, local governments and healthcare nonprofits will be helping to both design and operate the different pilot programs. [And] one city government is considering allowing 24-hour drive-thru windows as an incentive for chains to participate.”’s turnkey solution for in-store wellness centers is based on concepts first developed at Elephant Pharmacy. The company will also help facilitate other ideas that local institutions or the chains themselves initiate.’s focus is to help pharmacies foster wellness through healthy messaging.  Also announced Thursday — the nonprofit will host 23 wellness messages that are designed to fit on in-store signs on its Web site. New messages from healthcare practitioners and nonprofit organizations will be added every month.

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