In another industry first for pharmacy customers, Walgreens (NYSE: WAG)
(NASDAQ: WAG) today launched a new online "Find Your Pharmacist" tool
that allows customers to select a pharmacist by matching their health
care needs with the areas of expertise, specialties, languages and
clinical backgrounds of Walgreens pharmacists. As some of the most
accessible and trusted health care professionals in thousands of
communities nationwide, Walgreens pharmacists are uniquely positioned to
provide a range of services beyond medication dispensing and counseling.
Many of these are highlighted within search feature profiles and include
medication adherence, immunizations, diabetes management, children's
health, wellness education, medication side effects, HIV care and more.
While location historically has been a leading factor for selecting a
pharmacy or pharmacist for prescription needs, new research by Walgreens
shows clinical training and areas of expertise are also among
respondents' main reasons for selecting a pharmacy or pharmacist. In
fact, nearly 70 percent of respondents would consider a different
location or pharmacist if the pharmacist was trained in specific areas
that suit their needs.
"This is another way we are advancing community pharmacy by helping
people connect on a more meaningful level with Walgreens pharmacists in
their neighborhood, whether that is speaking their native language or
providing clinical information specific to their health condition," said
Kermit Crawford, Walgreens president of pharmacy, health and wellness.
"The pharmacist-patient relationship can be very instrumental in helping
to improve health outcomes because patients often are talking with their
pharmacist more often than their primary care physician. Establishing a
personal relationship with your pharmacist can help improve health
outcomes by helping customers feel comfortable and confident in working
with their pharmacist for information, advice and support."
To find a pharmacist or learn more about pharmacists at each of the more
than 7,800 Walgreens pharmacies, the search feature is available by
or through the Walgreens.com store locator. The search tool also
provides a map and the opportunity to meet the store pharmacy team.
Mobile users can also access the tool on-the-go through any web-enabled
According to a Pew Internet & American Life Project report focused on
health information, of the 74 percent of adults surveyed who use the
Internet, health topics and doctors or other health professionals ranked
among the top three information topics searched for online1.
The Walgreens survey also suggests the following among pharmacy customer
Nearly one third would like to have the ability to search for a
pharmacist based on their expertise
Of those who know their pharmacist by name, nearly 75 percent consider
their pharmacist a critical or very important member of their health
Crawford said, "We are focused on strengthening the relationship between
our pharmacists and patients to provide the care and expert advice they
deserve. By going above and beyond, we can help people live well, stay
well and get well with the expanded products and services we offer."
Walgreens Online and Mobile Pharmacy Tools
"Find Your Pharmacist" search is Walgreens latest innovation developed
to help patients better manage their health and stay well. Walgreens
pharmacy staff is also available 24/7 online for one-on-one live chats
to answer patient questions and concerns through the Walgreens website
In addition, Walgreens last month introduced new mobile pharmacy tools
including Pill Reminder and Transfer by Scan to help
smartphone users better manage prescription needs and help promote
greater medication adherence. Refill by Scan, a Walgreens mobile
technology that was an industry first, allows pharmacy customers to
order prescription refills simply by scanning a barcode. Today, nearly
40 percent of Walgreens online refills currently come through mobile
The Walgreens survey was fielded April 6-10, 2012 and involved a sample
of 1,000 respondents. Data was collected through random sampling of
Ipsos Online Omnibus' 500,000+ member online panel. The Ipsos online
panel is recruited and maintained and utilize double and triple opt-in
screening processes to ensure maximum return from an engaged and
representative audience. The panel is updated regularly and
non-responders are removed. Both the survey invitation list and the
returned data are weighted to reflect the demographic composition of the
U.S. adult population.
As the nation's largest drugstore chain with fiscal 2011 sales of $72
billion, Walgreens (www.walgreens.com)
vision is to become America's first choice for health and daily living.
Each day, Walgreens provides nearly 6 million customers the most
convenient, multichannel access to consumer goods and services and
trusted, cost-effective pharmacy, health and wellness services and
advice in communities across America. Walgreens scope of pharmacy
services includes retail, specialty, infusion, medical facility and mail
service, along with respiratory services. These services improve health
outcomes and lower costs for payers including employers, managed care
organizations, health systems, pharmacy benefit managers and the public
sector. The company operates 7,847 drugstores in all 50 states, the
District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Take Care Health Systems is a
Walgreens subsidiary that is the largest and most comprehensive manager
of worksite health and wellness centers and in-store convenient care
clinics, with more than 700 locations throughout the country.
1 Fox, Susannah, The Social Life of Health Information, 2011,
Pew Internet & American Life Project, May 12, 2011, http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Social-Life-of-Health-Info/Summary-of-Findings.aspx,
accessed on April 12, 2012.
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