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Strategies for seizing revenue opportunities outside of the PBM.
How can you diversify your revenue opportunities to achieve optimal success as an independent pharmacy? At the 2020 Pharmacy Development Services (PDS) Super Conference, which was held February 27-29 in Orlando, Florida, Lisa Faast, PharmD, Vice President of Business Development and Services at PDS, discussed a few strategies to enhance revenue opportunities outside of the PBM.
1. Allergy tests
Allergy skin tests are typically conducted by physician; however, it is not just the allergists who can do them, and in some states, pharmacists can do them as well, according to Dr Faast. However, she noted that they do have to be done in a physician’s office.
“There a couple of ways that you can participate monetarily in these allergy tests,” Faast explained.
For example, you can purchase and resell the allergy tests to the provider. Faast noted that you can also work with a collaborative practice agreement to actually do the test and screening for the physician in the physician’s office, and be able to share in that revenue.
2. Lab Tests/Point-of-care Wellness Tests
“If you’re not doing some sort of lab test, I think you’re missing out on a big niche,” Faast said. PDS partners Physician 360 and MyLAB Box offer a menu of laboratory testing that you can make money on. Both are designed to be cash-based models, meaning you don’t have to actually be able to bill the tests in order for it to work.
According to Faast, you can layer on the service-based pharmacy aspect by getting paid for helping to interpret those tests for patients. “And so that is a great way to take a program that’s already good, already viable on its own, with no PBM and be able to add on even some more service-based pharmacy revenue.”
3.Pharmacogenomic (PGx) Interpretation Tests
With RxGenomicx’ program, you get paid as a pharmacist to interpret PGx test with the prescriber, according to Faast. When the patients get the result back, you look at the results and get paid 90$ per test to talk to the prescriber to adjust the patients’ therapy based on their PGx results. And with that service-based pharmacy, you can consult with the patient and get paid for that, continuing to follow up as their medications change and bill for those future encounters. RxGenomix will update their profile, so as their drugs change or genetic profile gets updated with new information, you have that opportunity to follow up continuously and bill for those services.
4. Cannabidiol (CBD)
Although CBD seems like it’s been around for a while, it’s still the beginning of the market, and there’s so much opportunity that many are not taking advantage of, according to Faast.
“Even if you’re selling it, you probably could be doing more,” Faast said. This could include more education, marketing support, and working to alleviate the stigma around it in the community.
Faast emphasized that although some states have differing laws regarding CBD, it’s still important to become educated in preparation for changes in legislation.
“State laws change frequently, and when the change is in your favor, you’ll be ready to pounce on that and you’ll be first to market,” Faast said.
5. OTC Supplements and Retail Products
“OTCs are a fantastic way for you to own the market,” Faast said. According to Faast, you should be maximizing your OTC space, no matter the size of your pharmacy.
Patients are willing to pay for high-quality supplements if you’re able to give them the education they need. Faast suggested getting your employees involved by training them so they feel confident talking about these products with consumers.
In addition, knowing what’s trending within OTC health/beauty/wellness retail products is important.
“You need to know what’s hot right now and what to sell,” Faast said. “People do those impulse buys.” Stocking your pharmacy with the latest products in this space can help drive more revenue that will surely add up over time.
6. Weight Loss Coaching
Since weight tends to be the root of a lot of different problems that patients can have, weight loss coaching can be a viable service to offer in your pharmacy.
“Doing weight loss coaching is great way to diversify your revenue outside of the PBM,” Faast explained. You can devise a program that includes group-based services or 1-on-1 consultations that not only leads to optimization of your revenue but also improves health outcomes for your patients.
1. Faast L. Offensive Strategies: Diversify Your Pharmacy’s Non-PBM Revenue. Presented at PDS 2020 Super Conference. February 28, 2020. Orlando, Florida.