Understanding Generational Needs Can Help Pharmacists Interact With Patients

Millennials, Generation X, and Baby Boomers all have different health care needs.

Understanding generations can help pharmacists provide meaningful experiences to patients. Millennials, individuals between the ages of 18 and 38; Generation X, those who are aged 38-58 years; and Baby Boomers, who are aged 54-74 years, all have different health care needs.

Two presentations at the National Community Pharmacy Association (NCPA) Annual Meeting

in Boston addressed how pharmacists interact with a patient population that spans several generations.

“While each generation has unique priorities based on their generational ethos, it’s possible to create a customer centric experience in the pharmacy that works for each customer, no matter what their generation,” said generational expert, speaker, and author Meagan Johnson, during the presentation Challenge Your Generational IQ: How Well Do You Know Your Patient's Ethos?

Johnson explained that Millennials, who grew up in the age of rapid technological change, often prefer digital communication over face to face interactions. These young adults also receive most educational information online, and rely on peer recommendations, positive reviews, and first-hand stories for health information, according to the presentation. Millennials value and trust information coming from a personal experience, such as talking to a health care provider. Therefore, they may have to time to have a meaningful conversation about their health, even if it appears like they’re in a hurry, according to Johnson.

Convenience, flexibility, and accessibility are highly prioritized by Millennials, Johnson noted. As pharmacists are the one of the most accessible health care providers, with 93% of Americans living within 5 miles of a pharmacy, they are perfectly positioned to meet the needs of these patients. Additionally, the ability to meet with a pharmacist without an appointment makes pharmacist’s more flexible than other health care providers. Pharmacists can enhance the experience of Millennial patients by providing them with important information and answering questions regarding preventative health care, and ensuring they are aware of all health care services offered, according to the presentation.

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