Highlighting the important role independent community pharmacists play in our national healthcare system.
Pharmacist: Emily Judy, PharmD
Pharmacy name: Judy's Drug Store
City, State: Petersburg, WV
Pharmacist's years of service: 10 years as a pharmacist. Family started in 1965—I'm a 3rd generation pharmacist. Worked in the family business since before high school in some fashion.
What led you to a career in independent community pharmacy?
Family Business—grew up in the business.
What makes your pharmacy standout from the competition?
We are the only independent pharmacy in town and we offer free delivery to the surrounding area. We offer a variety of services that the chains do not. We have a health education department in which we offer diabetic management education and medication therapy management.
What are your biggest challenges?
The biggest challenges we are currently facing are the decrease in reimbursements from the PBMs and the loss of patients/RXs due to most independent pharmacies being unable to remain in the preferred Part D networks and receive a reasonable reimbursement.
Describe a recent, rewarding experience with a patient:
Not my experience but from one of the other pharmacist, Randall Junkins:
"As I was checking the comfort medications for a hospice patient this evening I received a true dose of reality and experienced one of those moments that make you stop and put things into perspective...I checked the numerous meds, put them in a delivery basket and shipped them away to the patient's home... In retrospect, while I made sure all the directions and drugs were correct, I gave the "real..." situation little thought until a while later when I looked over and saw a older gentleman standing and looking at me with the bottles of morphine, haloperidol, and atropine that I had checked just a while ago...I asked if I could help him and he said, "My wife is at home dying from cancer and I need you to show me what to do with these...I'm just an old painter and I have no clue what I'm doing...The last thing I want to do is hurt her any more than she already is...I'll pay you whatever, I just need your help." It was my pleasure to drop everything else and show him what to do, and in reality I should have paid him for the lesson that I had learned...My day was stressful, but it couldn't compare to the stress of knowing that your wife was going to pass soon and it was your job was to make those last moments of hers as comfortable as possible. Tomorrow I will get up and go to work and be thankful that I have been granted another day, which is something that she may unfortunately not see..."
How has NCPA helped your business?
NCPA allows us to continue our day-to-day business while they fight the fight for the “little people” of pharmacy. It gives the independents a united voice that each alone could not do.
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