This spring, the opening of a new retail pharmacy at UHS Binghamton General Hospital (BGH) will bring easier and better access to medicine to the UHS community. The UHS Retail Pharmacy at BGH, located on the first floor of the Summit Building, is a full-service pharmacy that accepts prescriptions from any provider.
“Our goal is to provide on-site pharmacy services to patients and employees of the UHS Binghamton General campus,” says Meaghan Owen, PharmD, RPh, Pharmacy Supervisor at the UHS Retail Pharmacy at BGH.
Historically, patients and employees on the Binghamton campus would have to get their prescriptions filled by another UHS pharmacy, requiring extra travel, which can be difficult, especially for patients without a means of transportation. Now, however, “having a dedicated pharmacy right here on campus improves access to our current services and allows us the ability to expand those same services to meet a greater public need,” says Ms. Owen.
Filling every prescription
Standard medications are available at the UHS Retail Pharmacy at BGH, as are specialty pharmacy items, which include certain types of expensive, limited-distribution drugs. Specialty pharmacy services include drugs for multiple sclerosis, HIV, cancer, hepatitis C and rheumatoid arthritis, among other conditions.
“Some of these higher-risk communities have providers in [the Summit Building] or right across the street,” says Ms. Owen, “and now they’ll be able to get their medications from us,” which improves access for these patients.
In addition, for convenience, the UHS Retail Pharmacy at BGH stocks many of the most-requested over-the-counter items, so patients and employees can buy cough drops, aspirin or other items when picking up a prescription.
The UHS Retail Pharmacy joins four other UHS pharmacy sites: UHS Vestal, UHS Wilson Place, UHS Endicott and UHS Delaware Valley Hospital. Like the other outpatient pharmacies, the UHS Retail Pharmacy utilizes PharmASSIST® automation technology, provided through a partnership with the Johnson City-based company Innovation. Their pharmacy automation solutions help enhance workflows, patient safety and prescription transparency, as well as offer other efficiencies.
Unique to the UHS Retail Pharmacy at BGH, however, is the private consultation room, where pharmacists can provide one to one attention to patients who have questions or concerns about their prescriptions. “The separate consultation room allows us to have a private conversation by creating a safe space for a patient to ask questions while maintaining confidentiality,” says Ms. Owen.
Once the Retail Pharmacy is open to the public, there are also plans to mimic the “Meds to Beds” program that is currently offered at UHS Wilson Place. This program offers bedside delivery and consultations to patients who are in the process of being discharged from the hospital.
The UHS Retail Pharmacy at BGH is located on the first floor of the Summit Building at 33 Mitchell Ave., Binghamton, N.Y., across the street from the main entrance to UHS Binghamton General Hospital. It is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and on Saturday and Sunday, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. If you have any questions, you may reach the pharmacy at 607-352-5950.