Filling local health needs with compounding, infusion

10/16/2015

Marble City Health Mart Pharmacy co-owner Jared Johnson advises a patient.


Marble City Health Mart Pharmacy owners have secured a place in the life of the community by offering deeply personal care and a broad menu of vital health services.


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Those efforts won Marble City Health Mart McKesson Corp.’s 2015 Pharmacy of the Year. Marble City Health Mart has tapped a deeply rooted local need for health services and personal care that goes beyond traditional pharmacy dispensing and counseling.



The pharmacy staff holds diabetes education classes and conducts a diabetes fair twice a year. Pharmacists also regularly visit senior citizen facilities and low-income housing units and conduct community outreach and health presentations. “When you are out in the community, you gain the confidence of potential customers,” said co-owner Jared Johnson.



The owners’ commitment to personalized service goes beyond lip service. The Johnsons rotate carrying a store mobile phone so they are always available to their customers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.



Among other capabilities, Marble City Pharmacy specializes in pharmaceutical compounding. “When commercially available products are not available, we work with [a patient’s] physician to find alternate therapies,” Marble City’s owners reported. “We have the proper equipment to make most types of non-sterile compounds. We also bill most insurance [companies].”



Marble City also partners with the insurance program for state and local government employees to provide biometric health screenings, which can save government employees $25 a month in insurance costs.



In 2014, the owners launched Marble City Vital Care, a home infusion and therapy service and supply business. Previously, patients and their caregivers had to drive nearly 50 miles to Birmingham, Ala., for those services.



“Access to those services and supplies increased patient adherence and reduced the rate of avoidable readmissions to local hospitals,” the Johnsons said. “A coincidental yet welcome business benefit has been an increase in the number of traditional prescriptions filled from new patients cared for by physicians new to the pharmacy because of Marble City Vital Care.”



To keep physicians informed of developments in new generic drugs or changes in medication regulations, the Johnsons also send a “fax blast” to more than three dozen local physicians, and provide continuing education classes for doctors and nurses.


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