Figuring out the best way to run a successful and profitable independent pharmacy can often be difficult for store owners. Hiring and training the right staff poses its own list of challenges, but effectively managing your pharmacists and technicians can ultimately result in success. It is important to remember that the role of pharmacy technicians is so diverse and so beneficial, that if you’re not maximizing their role you could be doing yourself a huge disservice. According to an article published by Script Drop, “Pharmacists are the captains of the pharmacy ship. They undergo years of training to obtain their PharmD degree and licensing required by their state. Pharmacy techs are the much-needed crew members.” A variety of tasks and day to day operations can be dutifully managed by pharmacy technicians. Some of the key tasks pharmacy technicians are trusted with are preparing prescriptions and medications, inventory management, and patient engagement.
Inventory continues to be an independent pharmacies biggest overhead. Fortunately with today’s technology offered in pharmacy management software systems, handling inventory has become a much more manageable task. However, it does still require a person in the pharmacy to be involved at some level. With the knowledge and understanding of pharmacy operations, pharmacy technicians can be trained to assist with this task. Managing reorder points on drugs, circulating inventory, pulling overstock for returns, and managing outdates are a few of the ways pharmacy technicians can help improve your independent pharmacies inventory. Through Datascan’s pharmacy software and pharmacy point of sale system, technicians can print inventory reports to help them manage items on the shelves, determine what may be a slow mover and should be returned, and be alerted to any short dated items to avoid it going out of date.
Preparing and filling prescriptions is perhaps one of the most common roles of the pharmacy technician. This is arguably one of the most important as well. Patients choose an independent pharmacy for a reason and trust that you’re providing them with not only quick service, but efficient service as well. Understanding how to read prescriptions and how to accurately prepare them is such an important part of a pharmacy techs job. As pharmacies get busier more responsibility is placed on the technicians to step up and assist the pharmacists. Datacan’s pharmacy software allows pharmacy owners to turn on a multi-stage workflow that will help organize staff and tasks throughout the day. With the available options, pharmacists can pre-verify data entry from the technician, pass it along to a dispense/fill queue where technicians can work through an organized list of pending prescriptions, scan to verify the drug is correctly pulled, and then send back to the pharmacist for final checks. Our electronic workflow system is an enhanced way to fill quickly and efficiently within our pharmacy software system. The workflow within the Datascan pharmacy system is fully customizable. You can choose from an open platform with no forced steps, you can use a simple 2 step process such as data entry with claims adjudication and then verification, or you can use a 3, 4 or 5 step workflow with customizable options. Not all pharmacies operate in the same manner, nor do they all have similar volume. That is why a customizable pharmacy software system is so important.
Pharmacy technicians are often the first people to speak with patients and make an impression on them. Customer service skills are so important as many patients coming into a pharmacy are ill and require assistance. Pharmacy technicians are able to help patients picking up prescriptions, assist them picking out an OTC product, make recommendations, answer some basic medical questions, or refer them to the pharmacist. Through our pharmacy management software pharmacy technicians can enroll patients into text and email communication that will allow pharmacy staff to send alerts when patients have prescriptions due for refill, are ready to be picked up, and can even send completely custom messages. For those states that do not have required electronic prescriptions, technicians and cashiers can also use our software to scan in paper prescriptions and set the customer in the central filling queue. This queue also allows them to set a priority such as “waiting” which will put these customers to the top of the list.
The role of the pharmacy technician has grown and continues to grow year after year. Teaming up with a software vendor that supports your workflow, allows you to easily manage your technicians and task them with responsibilities, and is efficient is important to the success of your independent pharmacy. Datascan pharmacy software helps you to manage your business and your employees profitably.