Retail pharmacies have proved successful in expanding their role in primary care services and patients are responding positively.
Delivering primary care services through retail pharmacies has proved successful during the past year. In fact, more than half of retail pharmacy patients surveyed reported using health and wellness services in the last year, according to the recently released results of the JD Power 2021 US Pharmacy Study. Customer satisfaction and spending have increased due to these developments, signaling a shift toward pharmacy-based health offerings beneficial to both pharmacies and their patients.
The report demonstrated that 51% of individuals who use retail pharmacies indicated using such services in the past year––an increase from 48% in 2020 and 43% in 2019. The services most frequently utilized are vaccinations and routine screenings. It has been previously unknown whether patients would feel comfortable with receiving medical care in a retail setting; however, the COVID-19 pandemic was a turning point in which customers began using these services more steadily.
According to the survey findings, patients who use at least 1 health and wellness-oriented service spend an average of $5 more than those who do not use these services. Overall satisfaction increased with the use of health and wellness services, with scores rising to 24 points on a 1000-point scale and Net Promoter Scores increasing by 10 points.
Further, mobile app integration has become essential for pharmacies to stay relevant and compete with other medical providers and services. With the expanding role of the community pharmacist in patient care, mobile app technology is important in connecting patients with their pharmacists. Studies show mobile app use increased this year with nearly 27% of customers using their pharmacy’s mobile app.
The U.S. Pharmacy Study measures the overall satisfaction of pharmacy customers with traditional, face-to-face pharmacies and mail-order pharmacies. The 2021 study is based on responses from 12,646 pharmacy customers who filled a prescription during the 3 months prior to the survey period of September 2020 through May 2021.
The survey ranks brick-and-mortar and mail-order pharmacies based on success, loyalty, and advocacy metrics. Looking at the survey results and data, Good Neighbor Pharmacy ranks highest among brick-and-mortar chain drug store pharmacies, with a score of 912. Health Mart (891) ranks second, and Rite Aid Pharmacy ranks third (866).
Sam’s Club ranks highest among brick-and-mortar mass merchandiser pharmacies, with a score of 891. CVS/pharmacy inside Target (879) ranks second, and Costco (877) ranks third.1
These scores and this survey analysis show the increase in customer spending, satisfaction, mobile app integration from the expansion of retail pharmacy health and wellness services, and the shift toward enhanced patient care in the community pharmacy setting.
Retail Health and Wellness Services Surge in Popularity, Driving Significant Gains in Pharmacy Customer Satisfaction, J.D. Power Finds. News release. J.D. Power; July 28, 2021. Accessed July 28, 2021. https://www.jdpower.com/business/press-releases/2021-us-pharmacy-study.