Highest Spending at Independents

In the November 12, 2007 issue of Drug Store News, they have a Pharmacy Facts section.  This month’s fact is about how much pharmacy customers spend on prescription medicines per month at the different types of pharmacies.  This is based on a survey done by WilsonRx.

  1. Independent – $87
  2. Mass Merchant – $82 (e.g., Target)
  3. Food – $78
  4. Chain Drug Store – $75 (e.g., CVS or Walgreens)
  5. Mail / Online – $69
  6. Clinic – $40

Even being close to the data, I am not sure what this tells me:

  • Older patients (who have more Rxs and therefore higher spend) go to the independents?
  • People without insurance and who pay full-price go to the independents?
  • The independents aren’t as able to drive formulary compliance and/or generic utilization to help lower out-of-pocket costs for their patients?
  • That people that go to independents are less likely to divide their spending between multiple pharmacies (i.e., use retail and mail order)?

It is an interesting data point, but without context, I am not sure how anyone can do anything with it.  But, that is how data gets manipulated.  I could use it to support any theory above.

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