ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, NJ - Bayshore Pharmacy, the family owned business in the Foodtown Shopping Center on Route 36, is one of three top finalists in the country to be selected as the Pharmacy of the Year.
The nomination and selection are made by the Good Neighbor Pharmacy, a retailers cooperative network of independently owned and operated pharmacies with an affiliation with AmerisourceBergen, one of the largest pharmaceutical services companies in North America.
The independent stores combine efforts in order to share marketing expenses and obtain discounts from vendors. The association services pharmaceutical manufacturers and healthcare providers in distribution and related services designed to reduce costs and improve patient outcomes. AmerisoucreBergen represents 3500 pharmacies in a system that pools its power to become the fourth largest chain in pharmacies. It received the highest overall score in pharmacy customer satisfaction in the JD Powers and Associates national pharmacy studies several years in a row.
Final determination of the top selection among the three will be made at the annual trade show to be held in Las Vegas in June.
A filming team has been at the pharmacy this week to create a video that will be presented at the show, then made available on the internet in the store, and on YouTube channels. The film crew was filming in the borough as well as in the store itself to emphasize the impact the locally-owned business has and shares within the community it serves.
Criteria for the nominees for the national owner are selected on the basis of impact, leadership, innovation, and technology and adherences. The winner is determined by its peers, pharmaceutical manufacturers and AmericanBergen associates via text messaging voting during the Las Vegas trade show this summer.
If selected for the top owner, Bayshore Pharmacy will be the first pharmacy in the northeast to be named to the honor.
Richard Stryker, son of the borough’s former Mayor Richard Stryker, who started the pharmacy more than 50 years ago, owns and operates the store with his partner, Scott Eagelton. Over the years since it was founded by the senior Stryker, who was joined by his brother-in-law Joe McDonald shortly after he first opened, the store has expanded from its original 1800 square feet to its current more than 7,000 square feet of space which includes, in addition to the pharmacy and medical and over the counter health needs sections, a gift and card shop and unique home and garden accessories.
“We’re thrilled and excited for the honor of being one of the top three in the nation,” the younger Stryker said, “and happy that the industry recognizes what we have known and do all the time…take care of each of our customers and provide individual service to help them in a pro-active way when it comes to their pharmaceutical needs.”
The personal service and attention which is a trademark of Bayshore Pharmacy over the past half century have resulted in the family-owned business serving five generations of many families in this borough and the surrounding Bayshore towns.
Stryker said he believes the pharmacy’s involvement with the borough’s Food Pantry was one of the major deciding factors in assessing its community involvement. He cited the contributions the pharmacy has made to the pantry, organized by the local Methodist Church, including raising more than $700 for the pantry at the store’s 50th anniversary celebrations last year.
The individual attention the pharmacists give to their customers and their pro-active stance in providing total care most likely were the major contributors to the criteria for technology and adherence, he said. “Just because we continue to offer the same personal service and know our customers and their needs as well as my dad and uncle did in the 1960s doesn‘t mean we haven’t also met the challenges and advanced technology of the pharmaceutical business and all the related insurance issues of the 21st century,” Stryker continued.
Bayshore Pharmacy is the second business in Atlantic Highlands this year to be named a finalist in a national competition for excellence. The Flaky Tart on First Ave. was the only business in New Jersey to be a finalist in Best Bakery competition for the James Beard award.