April 19, 2011
The changing landscape in Pharmacy
A sold-out crowd came out to Pfizer’s head office last April 19 to hear Mark Dickson, a pharmacist and former pharmacy owner, and leader of the Pharmacy Innovation team at Pharmasave Drugs, a cooperative of independent pharmacy owners. Mark has also served as the Chair of the Canadian Association of Chain Drug Stores (CACDS) since October 2009.
According to Mr. Dickson, the role of pharmacists is evolving: from “rolling out” pills 100 years ago, today pharmacists are increasingly playing a much larger role in ensuring quality use of medications in Canada.
As he stated, the current distribution model with indirect funding is crumbling and a patient-centred service model is emerging. Also, in a growing effort to reduce costs, reference-based pricing and therapeutic substitution will soon become a reality. This shift from branded to generics is due in large part to the growing demand of medications and increasing healthcare costs incurred by our aging population.
What does this mean for pharma?
Mr. Dickson closed his presentation by reminding us that the community pharmacy is central to sustainable healthcare and that a change in culture is essential to establish appropriate partnerships and to help in the development of a new role for pharmacists.
If you would like to read more on managing pharmaceutical expenditure, check out the article by Paul Grootendorst and Aidan Hollis below.