Same-day delivery is becoming the new normal among retailers. It perhaps should come as no surprise, then, that it is starting to become an expectation among pharmacies as well. In fact, 43% of American consumers who were surveyed on the question expressed a desire for same-day pharmaceutical deliveries. Pharmacies that are able to make this transition successfully will have a substantial competitive edge.
The Advantages for Patients
Whereas same-day delivery of retail goods is largely just a matter of convenience, many factors make same-day medical goods delivery quite a bit more pressing. For one thing, patients may have a mobility impairment that causes them great difficulty getting in to the pharmacy to pick up their medication. A great deal of medical care revolves around care for the injured, disabled, and elderly, after all, and all of these groups are likely to have reduced mobility.
Privacy is another important issue for patients. These days, there are very strict government regulations such as HIPAA governing the control and release of medical information, laws that exist due to an overwhelming public demand for medical privacy. Still, picking up a prescription entails the disclosure of very sensitive information in public in a way that delivery does not. Time is a further consideration. Patients are often either busy or need to recuperate on their doctors’ orders, making pickup less than ideal.
There is, finally the matter of convenience. Although, as we have observed, same-day prescription delivery transcends the mere convenience afforded to retail shoppers, convenience remains an important consideration nonetheless. It’s simply one less trip to the store!
Benefits for Pharmacists
That there would be myriad benefits to same-day pharmaceuticals delivery for patients is to some extent intuitive. Perhaps more intriguing, however, are the numerous benefits afforded to pharmacists themselves. The first advantage is repeat business. By impressing customers with their speed and courtesy, pharmacists make it much more likely that their buyers will return. The buyer is also likely to recommend the pharmacy to friends and family as positive word-of-mouth is generated. It also makes the pharmacy more attractive to new customers, to whom delivery might be an absolute necessity, and who might rather deal with a local pharmacy they can speak to if need be than to a remote online distributor.
The business case for same-day delivery on pharmaceuticals is clear-cut. In an age where online ordering is becoming more and more the norm, pharmacies will encounter growing demand to get medications through the “last mile” of delivery by forming strategic alliances with local courier services.