When a patient is unable to take the commercially available drug or she requires a medication that has been discontinued, a licensed pharmacist can recreate that medication via compounding. Sometimes patients don’t respond to the traditional forms of treatment, or they simply need their medication in a different form. Compounding meets these needs by providing customized solutions for each patient’s needs, making it beneficial not only for your customers but also for your pharmacy.
At one time, all medications were compounded. However, with the advent of mass drug manufacturing, the role of compounding declined and pharmacists were seen more as cookie-cutter drug dispensers. Over the recent decades though, technology advancements and the rise of innovative techniques have allowed pharmacists to customize medications, which makes exploring the benefits of compounding as a differentiator in your market even more important.
If you are still undetermined about introducing compounding to your pharmacy, we’ve hand-selected these 5 benefits of pharmacy compounding that show how it can boost your business and help your patients live a healthier and happier life.
1. Allowing Access to Discontinued Medications
When large manufacturers discontinue production of certain drugs, they make it hard for the patients who still need these medications to fill their prescriptions. Compounding pharmacists play an important role in providing access to discontinued medications by recreating pharmaceutical-based ingredients in order to ensure that patients get the critical care they require. Today, compounding pharmacies have access to the highest quality pharmaceutical ingredients and can fill the prescription using the latest research, quality control process, and techniques that help meet the individual patient needs. You too can help your customers get the complete range of medications they require.
2. Making Medication Easier to Use
Some medications have a very unpleasant flavor, making it hard for the patients to take them as directed. A compounding pharmacist can custom make the prescription from scratch with the patient’s flavor of choice. This is especially handy when dealing with patients who may refuse medication, like young children, elderly patients, or even pets! Your patients will thank you once their medications, produced in the form that is convenient and easy to use, become available at your store.
3. Allowing Alternative Dosage Forms
From time to time, patients may need their medication in a different dosage form. For instance, patients who have difficulty swallowing a pill may find it easier to take their medication in a pleasantly flavored liquid form. Some medications can be also compounded in a topical form — cream or a gel that allows the medicine to be absorbed into the bloodstream through the skin. As a compounding pharmacist, you can offer these products in various dosage forms depending on the best method of compliance for the patient!
4. Making Medication Allergy-Friendly
Allergy, sensitivity, as well as a patient’s intolerance of dyes, lactose, gluten or alcohol, can cause the unwanted reactions when taking a certain medication. In other cases, commercially available medications may contain excipients such as fillers and preservatives that cannot be tolerated by the patient because of sensitivities or allergies to these substances. A compounding pharmacist can make a formula without the offensive ingredients, so a patient can still get the right treatment.
5. Offering Unique Services that Pharmacy Chains Don’t
When it comes to compounding, identifying your patients’ needs should be your top priority. What side effects are your patients dealing with? What questions might they have when they take their medicine? And, when you actually start developing a new product, how do you decide where to begin? A compounding niche can offer patients a service they can’t receive at most other pharmacies. It allows the pharmacist to use their extensive drug knowledge to help the patient and prescriber create a truly unique treatment plan. Compounding pharmacists are often able to offer treatments for unusual or resistant maladies that traditional allopathic medicine can’t help with or has failed.
Is compounding worth adding to your pharmacy?
Consider the number: An average pharmacy with 100 patients per day can easily have 5 patients who will benefit from compounding products. With an average $50 spent per prescription, this would add $77,500 per year to your gross profit. Compounding allows you to increase revenues while at the same time offering your patients and physicians choices with targeted solutions for their healthcare needs.
Ready to learn more? Talk to a pharmacy expert, we can help you identify the most profitable areas of compounding and other pharmacy niches, leverage marketing strategies for the compounding practice, and more!
Here are some additional resources that you might find useful:
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PDS Members: Login to PDSadvantage and take advantage of the member-only materials you have access to, including the Art of Compounding Webinar Series and the Compounding Connection Peer Group Discussions. You can also see our calendar of events for compounding in our events calendar.