How consumers choose a primary pharmacy

BY Rob Eder

Given all the attention around the hotly contested Express Scripts-Medco merger, Drug Store News thought we’d ask our C2B consumer reporters, if all things were equal and every pharmacy accepted their insurance, what would be the most important factors in choosing a pharmacy? Ninety-four percent said location/convenience, followed by customer service (50%). That’s just a taste of what they told us.

1) If all pharmacies accepted your insurance or charged the same amount for your prescription, what would be the most important factor(s) when choosing a pharmacy?

 * Includes kindness of staff, knowledge of what I am getting and staff ability to answer questions.

2) How many pharmacies do you use to serve all of your prescription needs?

3) If you answered more than one pharmacy, why do you use multiple pharmacies?

4) What characteristics do you like most about your current pharmacy of choice?


 * Includes kindness of staff, knowledge of what I am getting and staff ability to answer questions
Other popular responses: knowledge of product, insurance coverage, online reorder, wide selection, well operated and rewards program.

5) What are the cons about your current pharmacy of choice?

Other popular responses: no drive-through, understaffed, lack of insurance coverage, untrusted brands, decor, long checkout lines and lack of privacy.

6) What over-the-counter categories do you expect to find in the store where you purchase your prescriptions?


Other popular responses: children’s, dental, toiletries, ear care, topical, analgesics and contraception.

7) Some pharmacies offer patients consultations with pharmacists. Does your pharmacy of choice offer consultations?

8) If yes, have you ever tried a pharmacist consultation?

9) If you have tried a consultation, who paid for it?

10) If your pharmacy did offer consultations, would you be interested in receiving this kind of service?

11) If your insurance did not cover consultations, would you be willing to pay out-of-pocket for a consultation?

12) Do you use Twitter or Facebook?

Drug Store News has partnered with Engage.Me to develop the DSN/C2B Mobile Insights series as a regular feature and premium content offering for users. Interested in utilizing DSN/Engage.Me field research capabilities for exclusive research on your company? Contact Rob Eder at [email protected].

This survey was conducted by Engagement Media Technologies using the Gevius mobile application and EMTech backend. The campaign had 170 participants — 42% male and 57% female. The breakdown of participant age range is: 18 to 25 years old (16%), 26 to 35 years old (30%), 36 to 45 years old (18%), 46 to 59 years old (23%), and 60 years old and up (12%).


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muqtada321 says:
Aug-09-2012 08:48 am

A good primary-care doctor someone to coordinate your health care, help choose your specialists, and be the first to diagnose just about any problem is the key to good medical treatment.

Nicolas says:
Apr-27-2012 02:12 am

In fact, the pharmacy that you choose should have a good sized inventory. Smaller inventory pharmacies often have now run out of drugs and this causes the patient to have to wait a day or two to get a prescription while they order it. Or you will have to go to another pharmacy that has your prescribed drug in stock. Actually, no pharmacy can guarantee that they will have your prescribed drug 100% of the time, but if they have a large inventory, the odds are pretty good that they will have it in stock.



Walgreens, Lilly Diabetes partner on hypoglycemia education

BY Michael Johnsen

INDIANAPOLIS — Lilly Diabetes and Walgreens on Monday launched an awareness campaign at 43 Walgreens pharmacies throughout the Indianapolis area on the consequences of hypoglycemia.

"At Lilly Diabetes, we understand that managing diabetes extends beyond medicines to tools and resources that provide real, personalized solutions to improve the quality of everyday life," stated Steve Sugino, VP Lilly Diabetes. "This initiative will not only provide needed education, but will also ultimately help facilitate better discussions between pharmacists and people with diabetes that can lead to improved disease management."

The Lilly Diabetes-Walgreens approach is designed to complement the care and guidance people with diabetes receive from their healthcare providers. The campaign will be launched in 43 Walgreens stores in the Indianapolis area and will showcase Walgreens’ new approach to community pharmacy that includes making pharmacists more accessible for patient consultations. Based on customer feedback over the next six months, the companies will explore expanding the campaign in additional cities.


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Merck, Endocyte sign deal to develop cancer drug

BY Alaric DeArment

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. — Two drug makers have signed a deal to develop an experimental drug for treating two types of cancer.

Merck and Endocyte announced that they would develop and commercialize the latter’s drug EC145 (vintafolide), currently in a phase-3 trial, as a treatment for platinum-resistant ovarian cancer and a phase-2 trial for non-small cell lung cancer. Both studies are also using Endocyte’s experimental diagnostic agent, EC20 (etarfolatide).

"Vintafolide is a promising and innovative late-stage cancer drug candidate," Merck Research Labs EVP and president Peter Kim said. "In addition to pursuing the lead indication of platinum-resistant ovarian cancer, Merck plans to further evaluate its potential for treatment of multiple other cancer types."

Under the two companies’ agreement, Merck will pay Endocyte $120 million plus up to $880 million in milestone payments based on various development, regulatory and commercialization goals. If the drug receives regulatory approval, Endocyte also will receive an equal share of U.S. profits and a double-digit percentage of royalties on sales in other countries. Merck and Endocyte will market the drug together in the United States, while Merck will have the exclusive right to market it in other countries.

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