By John Chamberlin
As partner and owner of Professional Specialized Pharmacies, LLC, which operates five Hometown Pharmacy stores in the Pittsburgh area, Shawn Nairn has been in the retail pharmacy business for 12 years. Additionally, he is a partner of a long-term care pharmacy called Mission Pharmacy Services.
Given his success in the retail pharmacy industry and the strong desire to provide more convenient, secure manners of distributing medications to patients, Nairn has now concentrated his focus into personalized packaging of multi-dose medications.
As Nairn states, “The reason we developed RxMap is that, now, more than ever, patient’s compliance to medication is part of the healthcare paradigm. To reduce healthcare costs, we need to help patients to be more compliant with their medications so that they stay healthier and stay at home longer.
The RxMap packaging systems allows for patients, who are receiving multiple daily doses and/or multiple medications per day to have their prescriptions packaged in the same bubble packaging and marked for the day, and time of day the prescriptions are to be taken. In Nairn’s terms, “The RxMap program allows people to take multiple doses of multiple medications without opening all of the pill bottles every time.”
In the home setting, there may be family caregivers to parents, who have to separate the patient’s dosages each day to insure compliance. The RxMap system provides the patient’s medications already separated and labeled and then delivers it to their home, i.e. morning dosage, afternoon dosage.
Director of Sales and Marketing, Lynette M. Tomasetti says, “The first interaction for an RxMap customer is a pharmacist discussing the medications with the family or patient either over the phone, in person at the store or even at their home. The pharmacist then contacts the primary care physician and explains the RxMap process. It’s a very high-touch pharmacy approach.”
Nairn calls it “a concierge pharmacy.”
A key point to remember is that while RxMap can help seniors, it also applies to any patient that takes multiple doses and multiple medications. For example seizure patients or patients with a complicated regimen of medications for autism can also benefit from the RxMap program.
Nairn realizes that there will be many questions about this new service from patients, patient families’ as well healthcare providers. For example:
- “Who provides the quality assurance on the dosages and packaging?”
- “What does this kind of customized service cost?”
- “How easy is it to get refills?”
With the RxMAP system, a registered pharmacist will call the patient’s physician(s) to verify all medication doses, quantities and directions. Once all of the medication information is recorded, the pharmacist will organize the pills in the packaging according to the directions of the physician and ensure that medications do not interact with one another.
As far as the cost, there was originally a $14.95 per month service fee for the RxMap program but due to its success they have decided to offer it for free. Customers will only be responsible for the cost of their normal co-pays. And as for refills, Hometown Pharmacy keeps track of them and will automatically refill the patient’s medications and deliver them. The pharmacist communicates with the physician to stay up to date on physician orders.
As a physician or other healthcare professional, you can suggest this service to your patients. They can be enrolled in the RxMap program by simply calling Hometown Pharmacy at 412-539-1331. There is also an online application through www.MyRXMap.com.