Stormont Vail Health recognizes Retail Pharmacy for excellent service

Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 4:35 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Stormont Vail Health network is recognizing its Retail Pharmacy for its excellent customer service during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Stormont Vail Health says great teamwork is evident throughout its network and believes it is vital to recognize the efforts being made. It said as a team its goal is to take care of each other and its patients and much more can be accomplished together rather than alone.

Stormont Vail President and CEO, Robert Kenagy, M.D., said the network recently received a letter from a grateful customer of the Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy wanting to make sure it knew of the great services the pharmacy is providing. The author referred to the pharmacy as a “small, but might pharmacy.”

“Of all my dealings with local retail in our community, this particular pharmacy exceeds any other I’ve known,” said the customer. “I often observed the pharmacist counseling people who were starting new medications. Teaching takes time. It means you care. It also relieves anxiety and promotes better health care outcomes. They demonstrate a uniquely, friendly customer service, even with a limited contact by window. Before the need for masks, we could see those wonderful smiles. Now I listen for that smile in their voice…”

According to Stormont Vail, its Retail Pharmacy team has undergone a massive amount of change over the past few months due to COVID-19. It said the walk-in lobby has closed so prescriptions had to be distributed through the drive-through window or delivery. It said this was part of many COVID-19 adjustments.

“Closing the lobby to minimize COVID-19 exposure risk has been a sacrifice not only for our patrons, but for our staff as well,” says Christy Rooks, RPh, BCCCP, BCPS, Pharmacy Supervisor Ambulatory Services, who currently supervises the retail pharmacy team. “They have worked tirelessly through adversity together, always keeping in mind that Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy is essential to the community, and that our patients are relying on us.”

“Through it all and knowing that more change is coming, they managed to keep an amazingly positive and resilient attitude," said Dima Awad, PharmD, MS, Administrative Director, Pharmacy Services. "It is an empathetic team that cares deeply and mostly about serving the community.”

According to Christy and Dima, the retail pharmacy has also been more fully integrated with the specialty pharmacy and into the Ambulatory team under a new Pharmacy structure. Christy said the changes include the following:

  • Implementation of the Kansas Statewide Protocol for Administration of Vaccines by Pharmacists, allowing retail pharmacists to provide for immunization needs within the community, and implementing interventions that promote disease prevention and public health.
  • Expansion of Medication Therapy Management (MTM) services to the 2252 S.W. 10th Ave. location. This is an awesome service for patients aimed at improving outcomes by helping people better understand their health conditions and the medications used to manage them.

Stormont Vail said the space in the building that was previously occupied by Healthwise has been repurposed as the immunization and MTM appointments with pharmacists providing those services.

According to Stormont Vail, the retail pharmacy team includes four pharmacists, four PRN pharmacists helping when needed, six full-time pharmacy technicians, three part-time delivery drivers and one office supervisor. It said about half of the staff has been with the organization for a decade or more and the group has a total of 164 years of experience with Stormont Vail. It said Christy is new to the pharmacy leadership role and is managing the retail pharmacy on an interim basis until a new manager joins the team in October.

“She is going above and beyond and doing a fantastic job at it,” Dima says. “She is talented, dedicated and truly a joy to work with.”

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