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McKesson ideaShare sets record attendance, intros new tools

BY Michael Johnsen

McKesson ideaShare 2017, an interactive forum for independent pharmacists from across the United States, broke attendance records with the number of independent pharmacists and owners on hand to learn about how McKesson, hand in hand with its Health Mart franchise team, can help independents become a preferred destination for patient care. With improvements made to myHealthMart, introducing a new DIR estimator tool and optimizing generics sourcing, those attendees weren’t disappointed.

“There’s over 6,000 people at McKesson ideaShare in New Orleans this week really all focused on one thing — that’s your success, the success of independent pharmacy and really keeping independent pharmacy a very vibrant, important part of healthcare in the United States,” Mark Walchirk, president of U.S. pharmaceutical at McKesson, told attendees during the ideaShare opening session. “We’re committed to bringing together a comprehensive set of tools and resources to help you succeed. Our commitment is to continue to build out those tools and resources.”

Following Walchirk on the stage, Health Mart president Steve Courtman and Gene Cavacini, McKesson’s new COO for U.S. pharmaceutical, honored second-generation pharmacist Nicole Winnen and her Mac Prescription Shop Health Mart with the 2017 Pharmacy of the Year Award. Mac Prescription Shop was one of a record number of POTY nominees, Courtman reported. “To get nominated you have to be a strong community leader, embody the spirit of independent pharmacy, deliver outstanding patient care and run a successful, progressive business,” he said.

Mac Prescription Shop Health Mart performs in the top 20% of all adherence measures and actively pursues business, such as by working with local employers to provide flu shots. In addition, Winnen operates a durable medical equipment business across the street from her pharmacy location.

Echoing Winnen’s innovative approach to retail pharmacy, keynote speaker Michael Abrashoff, former commander of the Navy’s USS Benfold and author of “It’s Your Ship,” challenged independent pharmacy operators to break that mold of “always doing things the same way” and help reinvent how healthcare is delivered today during the opening session. “If I do things the way they’ve always done it, I’m never going to get anywhere. So I decided to challenge the process,” Abrashoff shared reminiscing on his career.

Chris Dimos, SVP of marketing at McKesson, closed the session with five opportunities independent operators who were looking to make the most of McKesson ideaShare 2017 should do. “The opportunity is real,” he said. “We believe very strongly that with our partnership we will be able to drive the pharmacy industry further and differentiate on patient care.”

Those five pathways to maximize McKesson ideaShare 2017 were:

  1. Download the McKesson ideaShare app. “It gives you access to a plethora of resources to help you with your assessments to navigate and personalize your trip to everything on the convention floor,” Dimos said. Pharmacists who downloaded the app were able to create their personal schedule, make a 12-month roadmap action plan and quickly find everything with interactive maps and general show information.  Attendees can still complete the Roadmap Planning Assessment to develop a 12-month action plan to achieve improved pharmacy performance and profits.
  2. Interact with peers. “There are some great ideas in and around you,” Dimos said. “Take advantage of those meet ups. Make sure you leverage all there is here for you to learn.” One great example of this peer to peer engagement was the inaugural Women in Pharmacy Own It Program, sponsored by McKesson’s RxOwnership, which created a community of women helping women to succeed by matching pharmacy students with owners and empowering pharmacy ownership. In the past year, McKesson has assisted more than 400 owners start new pharmacies and has helped more than 4,000 pharmacies through the ownership-transfer process since 2008.
  3. Maximize generic purchasing. “There’s an awful lot there to enhance your value above cost of goods,” Dimos said, referencing a generics purchasing incentive extended to McKesson ideaShare attendees. McKesson Connect NextGen Ordering has been updated to further improve customer ordering efficiency and effectiveness with fewer screens and a clearer returns process and workflows. The new purchasing portal also will have real-time ordering suggestions and discount opportunities.
  4. Tap into myHealthMart app. “There’s an interesting and valuable DIR estimator on there that you can use immediately,” Dimos said. Since myHealthMart launched, more than 80% of Health Mart stores are using the platform to proactively manage their business. To date, 4,000 registered stores and more than 7,000 individual users are using myHealthMart to improve their clinical and business performance and profitability.
  5. Engage digital. “Go to the Marketing Hub to assess your digital footprint,” Dimos advised. “What are you doing to drive your business?” At the meeting, Health Mart launched several new digital marketing solutions, including a Digital Listings and Reputation Management program, and provided free consultations with a digital expert from the Marketing Hub to review the health of the pharmacy’s online presence.

 

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