As autumn turns to winter, and winter turns to spring, it’s time to clean up your pharmacy and freshen everything—inside and out.
You and your staff are constantly filling prescriptions at a rushed pace. This is why your pharmacy becomes cluttered with unnecessary products. Here are some tips for refreshing your space, both inside and out.
Toss Out Medications
Look at your pharmacy shelves and check for medications that have been there for a year. Perhaps they’re too expensive for your patients or more of a niche medicine. Whatever the case, it’s time to start the return process. Ship the medication back to its manufacturer.
Check Medication Dates
Every prescription medication has its own shelf life. Keep track of prescriptions that about to expire. If it will expire within the next two to three months, take them out and begin the return process.
Use medications with the nearest expiration date first. That means you’ll have to stock the newest medications at the back of the shelf. By starting the process early, you’ll minimize the risk of your patients taking expired medications. This will help you manage your inventory more efficiently.
Return Your Medication Correctly
You can’t just return your unused or expired medications by throwing them into a plastic bag. Per wholesaler or manufacturer requirements, you must specify how many tablets remain in a bottle. Count the pills and write the number on the bottle. If there is any HIPAA-sensitive information on the bottles, remove it completely. The labels can be difficult to remove after long periods of time. Be sure they’re void of any and all patient information. Close bottles properly or else they will be denied.
Check the Will-Call Bin
Not everyone will pick their prescriptions up in a timely manner. This piles up in your pickup rack, which is the first thing customers see. If your pharmacy is a mess, your patients might not come back. Be proactive with your prescription returns. Depending on your prescription volume, you can send back unpurchased prescriptions after seven to 10 days.
Declutter your Pharmacy Software System
Pay attention to your software system’s bandwidth. Is it quick and efficient? Efficiency is important for your work behind the counter. Here are some ideas on cleaning your software system:
- Look at your pharmacy’s patient profiles. Are there old insurance plans you can delete? What about your pharmacy’s inventory?
- Check your pharmacy’s vaccine inventory and take out vaccines you no longer provide.
- Is your software up to date? If not, allow your software to update overnight.
Clean, Refresh, and Draw Them In
- Clean your floors. When was the last time you looked at your carpets? There is probably a lot of grime collecting there from patients dragging in mud and snow throughout the winter. If you don’t have carpet, give your floors some extra attention by sweeping the corners that often get skipped and give it a thorough mopping or polishing.
- Wash windows. Grab a squeegee and scrub off all of the grime and smudges. Crystal-clear windows are vital to allowing passersby peek inside to see what you have to offer.
- Refresh your window displays. Rethink the window displays you’ve had up for months, and take down those that are old and faded. Replace them with new promotions and information that will draw customers into your store. If your windows have space to display seasonal products, take advantage of the opportunity!
- Add a splash of color. As the weather warms up, place some nice planters and hanging baskets of colorful flowers outside the entrance of your pharmacy. Be sure to keep them watered and well-groomed. If they get overgrown or ratty, it may send the wrong impression to passersby.
- Take care of walkways. The path to your pharmacy should always be clear, accessible, and swept regularly. The same goes for your parking lot. Fill all potholes, and update signage That way, it’s clear where patients should go for drive-thru or curbside pickup. Check that exterior lighting is brightly lit, and change any and all dead or flickering lightbulbs.
Spring cleaning is the best way to begin the new season. It’s a breath of fresh air that not only inspires you and your staff, but your patients, as well!
A Member-Owned Company Serving Independent Pharmacies
PBA Health is dedicated to helping independent pharmacies reach their full potential on the buy-side of their business. Founded and owned by pharmacists, PBA Health serves independent pharmacies with group purchasing services, wholesaler contract negotiations, proprietary purchasing tools, and more.
An HDA member, PBA Health operates its own NABP-accredited secondary wholesaler with more than 6,000 SKUs, including brands, generics, narcotics CII-CV, cold-storage products, and over-the-counter (OTC) products — offering the lowest prices in the secondary market.