A local pharmacy, along with two other commercial companies, are preparing to take on additional customers after the Maryville Walgreens closes its doors Nov. 7.
Rogers Pharmacy has been receiving calls from Walgreens customers to transfer prescriptions to its pharmacy for more than two weeks. Since Walgreens announced its Maryville location will close Oct. 10, Rogers Pharmacy has been making preparations for an influx of customers by upping its staff and using resources it has at its disposal.
Rick Carter, the pharmacist in charge at Rogers Pharmacy, said their pharmacy is ready for the increase in business.
“We would like to have the opportunity to show people what we can do,” Carter said.
According to The Associated Press, nearly 40% of all Walgreens clinics are closing, which is about 150 stores nationwide. The closures are due to the increase in telemedicine services allowing people to receive care with smartphones.
Carter said wait times for prescriptions are not long, and now that they are starting to receive more customers, Rogers Pharmacy plans on making wait times as short as possible.
He added that he felt that their customer service sets them apart from other pharmacies because they do their best to treat all of their customers like family.
“We have been very satisfied,” regular customer, Gordon Garrett said.
This customer said that he moved his prescriptions from Hy-Vee to Rogers Pharmacy when his daughter-in-law started working at Rogers Pharmacy. He explained that he has been satisfied ever since.
In order to keep up with the new workload, Rogers Pharmacy will be taking steps to prepare its staff. Carter said the pharmacy plans to increase their staff by moving some part-time positions to full-time and plans to hire an employee from Walgreens pharmacy.
Technology in the pharmacy, including robots and computers, will play a part in handling the work as well. Carter said the robotic systems were made for large amounts of work and will be able to handle the workload. These robots assist in filling prescriptions and allows for more prescriptions to be filled at once.
Rogers Pharmacy will also use their drive-thru to aid customers. Carter said the pharmacy understands its customers’ time is important and they pride themselves on making wait times for prescriptions brief.
“We’re set to be able to handle the influx very well. We’re set up for that,” Carter said.
Rogers Pharmacy has a few payment plans for customers who may have concerns about how to pay for their prescriptions at a different pharmacy. Carter said the pharmacy is a part of a 340-B plan, which allows pharmacies to work with hospitals to help customers find affordable ways to pay for their prescriptions.
Carter mentioned that there are other payment methods, but he did not list all of them.
“I think the main thing is there are other opportunities other than insurance for people to help with the payment of their prescriptions,” Carter said. “Our staff will look at everything that’s available to you to determine which route is the best for you.”
Rogers Pharmacy is working to turn Walgreens’ closure into something good, Carter said. It plans to work with Hy-Vee and Walmart Inc. pharmacies in order to take care of all of their customers’ needs.
Carter added that Rogers Pharmacy wants the community to know that it has the option to choose which pharmacy handles their prescriptions going forward. Carter said that the process is simple and easier than what people think.
Carter explained all people need to do is call the pharmacy they would like their prescriptions transferred to and ask the staff to transfer their prescriptions.
Hy-Vee’s pharmacy will be receiving any prescriptions that are not transferred to a different pharmacy prior to Nov. 7. Maryville Hy-Vee representatives declined to comment..
Walmart Inc. was also contacted but did not respond in time before publication.