First season of makeover show follows 5 pharmacies building immunization programs.
The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) launched their new video series, Show Me, in November 2022. The YouTube video series is “styled after popular television makeover shows,” and focuses on pharmacists who want assistance in expanding their practice, according to the NCPA.1
“We’ve sent experienced peers who have robust vaccination programs into stores with pharmacies that have indicated to us that they wanted some help, and we’re filming that,” Kurt Proctor, PhD, RPh, senior vice president of strategic initiatives at NCPA, said in an interview.2 “We believe many pharmacists will see themselves in the pharmacies that we’ve gone into [to] film, and [that it will] help a lot of pharmacies experiencing the same kinds of problems, challenges, [and] hurdles that they want to get over. Hopefully they’ll find nuggets of help,” he said.2
The first season’s theme is immunizations, and its 5 episodes follow different pharmacies that would like to launch immunization programs, market the programs, or make them profitable. Each independent pharmacy is assisted by an independent pharmacist who has successfully implemented an immunization program.1
The first episode of the series follows Circle Pharmacy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Owners Christopher O’Neill, PharmD, and Gwendolyn O’Neill, PharmD, wanted to launch a vaccination program but did not have much luck.3
Circle Pharmacy was founded in 2010, and in addition to immunizations, its services include free deliveries, health screenings, medication synchronization, personalized medication reviews, and supplement and vitamin evaluations.4 The O’Neills have been pharmacists since 2006 and have been licensed to administer vaccines since 2010.4
In the episode, the O’Neills sat down with Tana Kaefer, director of clinical services, and Meredy Ayers, a pharmacy technician, both at Bremo Pharmacy in Richmond, Virginia, to discuss how Circle Pharmacy has approached vaccination programs in the past and what they want to try going forward.3 Kaefer and Ayers demonstrated Bremo Pharmacy’s billing process to help the O’Neills better understand how the billing process works, how to reconcile outstanding claims, and how to get technicians involved with billing.3
Another focus for Circle Pharmacy was to tap into its existing customer base to bolster the vaccine program.3“[Most of the time] when you have [patients] in [who need a flu shot], they also probably need up to 3 [or] 4 other shots,” Kaefer told the O’Neills.
They also discussed key ways to identify patients who may need vaccines. One way is to identify age-related vaccinations that could be used to identify patients who need other vaccinations, Kaefer said.3 Once Kaefer and Ayers helped Circle Pharmacy identify what was needed for its vaccination program, the O’Neills were ready to set a date for the program launch.3
As a goal, they had 2 weeks to give 10 shingles vaccines to patients, which they did not meet. However, they were able to give approximately 25 COVID-19 booster doses.3 Many of their patients who received vaccinations found out about the immunizations through word of mouth, and Circle Pharmacy was able to set up vaccination clinics in addition to getting patients vaccinated at the pharmacy.
The NCPA has an objective of making immunizations a core competency of community pharmacy practice, and the NCPA Innovation Center has undertaken many projects to help make that happen, Proctor said.2 “We have lots of resources available to our members. We talk about it a lot, but we wanted to do something unique and present kind of a reality show approach to help pharmacists get over whatever hurdles they’re facing and expand their vaccination program,” Proctor said.2
1. Show Me. National Community Pharmacists Association. Accessed January 12, 2023. https://ncpa.org/show-me
2. Continuing education is important for pharmacists to provide best care to patients. Pharmacy Times®. October 4, 2022. Accessed January 12, 2023. https://www.pharmacytimes.com/view/continuing-education-is- important-for-pharmacists-to-provide-best-care-to-patients
3. The vaccine episodes: jumpstart our program (episode 001). NCPAvids. Accessed January 12, 2023. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwETkP-TAGSo
4. About us. Circle Pharmacy. Accessed January 12, 2023. https://www.circlepharmacy.net/index.php/retail-pharmacy-about-us