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Competition for the typical US family prescription drug dollar is surprisingly stiff. The results of a new study show that, on average, individuals who patronize independent community pharmacies now have a choice of 21 other retail pharmacies in their market area.
The choices are even broader in urban areas, where 7 of 10 independent pharmacies are located. Individuals in these areas have access to an average of 30 other outlets within a 2-mile radius—including chain drugstores, supermarket pharmacies, and other independents—said the researchers at SK&A Information Services.
The concentration of community pharmacies is considerably less in nonurban areas, the study found. In the suburbs, independent pharmacy consumers have access to an average of 7 competing pharmacies located within 5 miles of their current pharmacy, whereas rural areas average 14 competing pharmacies within 15 miles.