U Save It Pharmacy Uses Service Model to Deliver Customer Value
Thursday, September 18th, 2014
U Save It Pharmacy prides itself on the relationships it builds with customers, as well as the convenience it provides. Extensive knowledge of patient needs, fast service – including free delivery – and accessible locations all play an important part in the pharmacy's model for delivering value to its customers.
"Besides the doctor, the pharmacist is one of the most important people in providing quality health care," said Jay Sharpe, one of the principals at U Save It Pharmacy.
"We know our patients and their medications. And we provide excellent service like free delivery, which is available at about half of our locations. It's a great service for seniors who may find it hard to get out and for working families who can receive a delivery at the office and avoid another after-work errand."
Convenient and accessible
In 1979, Fred Sharpe, Jay's father, purchased U Save It Pharmacy, which was then just a single store. The pharmacy has grown to more than 40 locations. According to Jay, most locations are strategically placed near doctor offices or hospitals to be as convenient and accessible as possible for patients.
"Many locations have double drive-thru windows to make it easier to fill a prescription when you have a sick child in the car, for example," Jay said.
"Our goal is to fill new prescriptions in 10 minutes or less. With a refill, we should be able to get you on your way in just a couple of minutes."
Supporting the community
The company tries to be active in the community by giving money and by volunteering time. Community involvement is driven from the bottom up. For example, one store location has a team participating in a recent "Dance Dash" race benefitting the Children's Miracle Network.
Employees also volunteer at senior centers and assisted living facilities. According to Jay, it's another way U Save It employees get to know their customers. The company also sponsors the Albany U Save It Christmas basketball tournament every year.
Dealing with changing regulations
Regulatory reforms have brought a great deal of uncertainty to every business involved in health care, including independent pharmacies. Dealing with increased red tape tends to hurt smaller businesses the most, according to Jay.
"At our size, we're fine but we do have to work harder for less margin," Jay said.
"Insurers are cutting back on the number of doctors, hospitals and pharmacies on their preferred networks to cut costs. That's hard on our customers and legislators are looking for ways to address the issue."
Although the health care environment is likely to remain challenging in the near future, Jay believes the services provided by U Save It will continue to set it apart and keep customers coming back.
More information on U Save It Pharmacy is available at usaveitpharmacy.com.