Pharmacies Should Adopt Proactive Health, Wellness to Help Patients


Kathy Campbell, PharmD, discusses why she believes wellness and proactive health are the future of pharmacy and the unique value they offer compared to traditional models.

Proactive health, which differs from the reactive health care model that is currently used in the majority of settings, aims to improve patient health outcomes by delaying the onset of illness. It places responsibility on the patient and health care professional to gain a better understanding of how to improve everyday health and wellness.

Should pharmacists promote the concepts of proactive health and wellness? / dusanpetkovic1 -

Should pharmacists promote the concepts of proactive health and wellness? / dusanpetkovic1 -

With many people now being more interested in their health, due largely to the COVID-19 pandemic,1 should pharmacists promote the concepts of proactive health and wellness in their communities? Drug Topics sat down with Kathy Campbell, PharmD, pharmacist and patient advocate at Medicap Pharmacy in Owassa, Oklahoma, and CEO of DrKathy Health, at the 2024 American Associated Pharmacies (AAP) Annual Conference, to discuss why she believes wellness and proactive health are the future of pharmacy.

READ MORE: Pharmacists Are On the Front Line of Women’s Health and Wellness

Drug Topics: How do you define the concepts of wellness and proactive health, and why do you believe they are crucial for the future of pharmacy?

Kathy Campbell, PharmD: Proactive health is just what it says, you're actually going upstream of the diagnosis and you're actively engaging in preventing the onset and progression of chronic disease. In our current reactive health model, it really takes getting sick and having a diagnosis to access health care. There is increasingly more people who just want the information and the products and the knowledge and the support to not get sick. Now, if you are sick, part of that whole proactive health model and wellness model is ‘How can we avoid getting sicker?’ If you're on blood pressure [medication], how do we keep you from that stroke? So, I think the pharmacist is perfectly suited to, one, be the intelligent, trained, reliable, trusted resource for our patients [and] for our communities, before they’re patients, to actually give them access to science and support on being well. And that's it. Not needing the diagnosis, not needing the medications.

That really is, I think, the new model for pharmacy…It's really what’s in our heart anyway. We don't want these patients we've known for years to be sick, or to have the cancer diagnosis. We inherently do this, but the structure of our business is not this. So, I've just created more of my structure and my branding and my marketing and my clinical understanding of this proactive, functional health model, to keep people functioning well and not just wait until we have the diagnosis.

Drug Topics: Can you discuss the unique value proposition that a wellness-focused pharmacy offers compared to traditional pharmacy models?

Campbell: I think the value [proposition] for pharmacy is that we're smart [and] we’re trusted. We're not going to sell snake oil. We're not the kid at GNC who may not know what he doesn't know. We also have a deep training in pathophysiology. We not only know what the disease is, we know how people get there. We not only know what the drug is, we know how to avoid it. I think the value proposition for pharmacy in wellness is that we know a lot. We can help you, but consumers don't know that yet. So, I know my consumers know that about me. They trust that and they're willing to invest with the products I sell because they trust me to give them the right information.

Right now, patients have more access to information, good information, than they've ever had in the history of humanity. The question is context and ‘Does it apply to me?’ That's what they're seeking help with. I think as we can shift and position pharmacy, and brand and market that we are the ones to help them be well, not just when they're sick, I think consumers are so ready for it. That's what they tell me. They say ‘This makes so much sense. I never thought to come into a pharmacy for this but it makes so much sense.’

READ MORE: How Pharmacies Can Effectively Transition to a Wellness-Focused Model

1. New CVS Health Study finds people are taking greater control of their health as a result of the pandemic. News Release. CVS Health. July 8, 2021. Accessed April 18, 2024.
Related Videos
© 2024 MJH Life Sciences

All rights reserved.