Close to the Halifax International airport you’ll find Enfield Pharmachoice, the place David Caswell calls home.
By Wayne Caverly
Enfield Pharmachoice was a 2,100 sq. ft. pharmacy with an adjacent 1,400 sq. ft. physician’s office complex.
The physicians’ space was not being used and David desperately needed to increase the size of the dispensary to keep up with growing prescription volumes.
It would have been an understatement to say space was tight. At only 217 sq. ft. it was very difficult for the staff to be efficient, and the use of ‘Drug-A-Doors’ for Rx shelving not so subtly revealed the age.
Further adding to the pharmacy’s issues was the use of a single counter for drop-off, pickup and semi-private counseling.
David decided to utilize the empty physician office space to enlarge the dispensary without reducing any of his front shop. Because the existing dispensary was in the proper location (vis-à-vis the front entrance), the new dispensary reception was placed in almost the same spot, with the production areas in the newly freed-up physicians’ space (see layout below).
The added benefit of this placement: It allowed for construction of the new dispensary without disrupting business.
The newly designed 790 sq. ft. dispensary provides separate drop-off, semi-private counsel, and pickup locations – so important to an efficient workspace. It also boasts a manager’s office and two private counsel / treatment rooms. The Drug-A-Door storage is replaced by a high-density shelving system.
The home health care (HHC) section previously used 480 sq. ft. of the front shop. Now, HHC home health is located in the expanded entry to the old physician’s offices. This space allows for all existing HHC items and displays, and adds a fitting room.
Gift sales have been a growing business for Enfield, so David wanted to increase the size of this section, as well as make it more visible and inviting. Previously placed in the 200 sq. ft. entry to the physicians’ offices, gifts are now in a 250 sq. ft. section at the rear of the main space. With no physical barriers, the giftware section can be increased as needed, even to allow for seasonal fluctuations.
Back to the dispensary: Vial and blister filling now have individual workstations while still sharing inventory.
Data entry is located directly beside reception, allowing two employees to staff these locations at busy times.
The checking location is strategically located between the filling areas and the counsel rooms, allowing the pharmacists to perform their duties with next to no movement.
Enfield Pharmachoice decided to use Uniweb modular workstations within the dispensary, to allow for full flexibility now and in the future.
With this system, all the under-counter and above- counter items (shelving, printer supports, vial drawers, phone stands, etc.) simply hang off a metal slatwall. This allows for any item to be moved at any time without the need for tools and allows the pharmacy to be modified as practice-changes demand, without any expensive modifications.
It also will allow David, when the time comes, to change the look of his dispensary at very low cost. The millwork finishing can be changed out while the internal metal structure and moveable accessories remain.
David reports he has received “many positive comments from both customers and other pharmacy owners who have toured through… and front store sales are up significantly without anyone complaining about the renovations.”
There are obvious financial benefits from renovating your pharmacy!
Wayne Caverly is president of the Caverly Consulting Group. He is also an internationally recognized speaker and published author with more than 40 articles on pharmacy automation and design who has contributed to two pharmacy textbooks. He has more than 25 years’ experience automating, designing, and reengineering community pharmacies.