August 16, 2017
As physicians stop providing immunizations and vaccinations, independent pharmacies can fill that need.
And we’re not only talking about offering flu shots.
Valu-Med Pharmacy, an independent community pharmacy located in Midwest City, Okla., does more than provide the standard immunizations. The pharmacy also offers a travel vaccination program for patients preparing to go on trips abroad.
Patients planning on traveling out of the country can schedule a consultation and a vaccination appointment on Valu-Med Pharmacy’s website.
The pharmacy asks patients to fill out a consent form and enter their insurance information online before their appointment, so the pharmacy can prep for their visit.
“After we review their intake forms and make sure there are no contraindications, we’ll sit down with them and review the recommendations based on what the CDC is saying and provide them with a traveler’s health report,” said Justin Wilson, Pharm.D., co-owner of Valu-Med Pharmacy.
The health report details everything patients need to know about the country they’re visiting. The report includes recommended shots, laws they may not be familiar with and general tips, such as what side of the street to drive on.
“We also counsel them on things like safe food and water habits and insect precautions,” Wilson said.
After the appointment, patients also receive an email with their vaccine information statements. And they a get a digital copy of their records to keep on their smartphone.
And, the pharmacy provides any necessary paperwork patients need to get through customs, such as a yellow fever card.
“That’s kind of the full service, top to bottom,” Wilson said.
Offering travel vaccinations brings more patients through his pharmacy’s doors, Wilson said.
People need to protect their health while traveling abroad. But they often find it difficult to locate a place that offers the vaccines they need. “We’ve had patients come from as far as three hours away because they couldn’t find the vaccine in their community,” he said.
And, travel vaccinations provide another revenue stream for the pharmacy. Ways to add revenue are vital in today’s world of dwindling reimbursements and increased competition.
“If we weren’t providing these vaccines, I think our numbers would look a lot worse than they are,” Wilson said.
Look into offering a travel vaccination program to add a diversified revenue stream to your business.
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