Pharmacy ownership lures new operators

One of Health Mart’s newest owners is Yang Xiong, who opened Minneapolis’ Northside Community Health Mart Pharmacy in July. A 2011 graduate of the College of Pharmacy at the University of Minnesota, Xiong spent his first years working for two national chains. That experience led him to want to operate his own pharmacy and have a more direct impact on his patients.

Xiong serves a community that is 90% of Hmong descent — an Asian ethnic group from the mountainous regions of China, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. Xiong speaks a total of four languages, a strong point of difference.

“A lot of Hmong patients are skeptical of Western medications that come in a tablet or capsule version,” he told DSN. “I try to bridge that gap.”

Looking forward, Xiong wants to get into diabetes counseling. “There’s a growing population [among the] Hmong population that have caught up to Western chronic diseases — diabetes, high cholesterol and hypertension.”

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