As we discussed in March, stiff competition and market trends make it important for pharmacies to use tech to grow business. Automated text, email and voice-messaging features are essential for staying competitive with large chains.
“Everyone’s business is on a downward trend because of competition from PBM-owned mail-order pharmacies steering patients to fill prescriptions within those portals. This competition reduces volumes for independent pharmacies. Utilizing technology to help us do more with less is absolutely critical,” says Ishan Trivedi, the business manager of Sullivan Pharmacy in Liberty, New York.
Trivedi was aware of services that allowed for proactive outreach to patients and requested that BestRx customize a module. He was so passionate about the tool that he participated in the module’s beta testing. His business, Sullivan Pharmacy, has been using the messaging interface for over two years. From a business perspective, Trivedi says, the module allows his pharmacy to capture more refills with less effort. “The proactive automated system generated business for us and the direct messaging keeps the pharmacy psychologically in the patients mind.”
The BestRx messaging interface has five key features that pharmacies can opt into based on the needs of their businesses:
- New-patient welcome messages via text, email or phone.
- Prescription-ready notifications via text, email or phone.
- Birthday wishes via text, email or phone.
- General messages regarding flu season, special services or store sales.
- Refill reminders, with the option of authorizing the refill through a HIPPA-secured link to information about the prescriptions.
Pharmacies with automated phone systems can also link the messaging interface to it for additional phone and voice functionality.
Ankit Desai, the pharmacy manager of Cannon Pharmacy in Freeport, New York, chose to adopt the text and email module to enhance patient care. “We use it to notify patients that their prescriptions are ready to be picked up or refilled. This supports their compliance with their medications,” he said. “Birthday wishes and new-patient welcome greetings are a bonus.”
Robert Prizel, the owner and pharmacist of Prizel’s Pharmacy, in Olean, New York, says that prior to the module it was difficult to keep track of when patients’ refills were due and almost impossible to let them know when prescriptions were ready. He estimates that now at least half of the refill requests come in through the automated system. “The refill requests are waiting when we come in in the morning, which is great. I’m not staying late as often to finish up the days work. We are more efficient in getting all of the work related to filling prescriptions.”