Your local pharmacy has always been the model for the big chain pharmacies. They desperately try to duplicate the service and care that comes naturally to a local business, but they always fall short of their goal. The reason is simple; they are not a local business. Last week, CVS announced they will continue to pretend to be a community-based pharmacy by offering delivery service. CVS customers will need to wait one or two days for their deliveries for a fee ranging from $4 to $8.
The huge Massachusetts conglomerate has once again misunderstood what customers want from their local pharmacy. The 23,000 locally-owned pharmacies staffed by your neighbors and friends are an example of true community-based, pharmacy care. Every home, apartment, and office in the Bayshore area is within a local, independent pharmacy’s delivery area. According to the National Community Pharmacy Association, 72 percent of locally owned community pharmacies offer same-day home delivery, and most of those offer home delivery as a free service. More importantly, a majority of members said most deliveries were made in under six hours. A quick survey of the Bayshore area pharmacies revealed that every one of the stores provide same-day delivery of both prescription and over the counter items, usually within 6 hours.
Independent pharmacies are different because independent pharmacy owners are your neighbors and friends. As a local pharmacy owner, I know your grandparents, your parents, and hire your children for their first job. I am happy to open the store in the middle of the night when you need an antibiotic. I know what brand and size product you prefer and keep it on hand just for you. I promote “Shop Local” and practice “Spend Local”. My family shops in the local stores, supports the local churches, and I look forward to seeing my patients and friends at the Firemen’s Fair Fireworks.
Despite CVS introducing their delivery program as a new and exciting idea, your local independent pharmacies have been providing home delivery for over 50 years. If you are still a CVS customer, stop by your favorite location then stop by one of the Bayshore area independent pharmacies. You will immediately notice the difference in customer care and service. Since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, stop by your locally-owned pharmacy today to see what CVS will announce in 50 years. We are different in the best possible ways.
Richard P. Stryker, RPh
Atlantic Highlands, NJ