Pharmacy of the Future Article

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How technology supports your pharmacy's future. For many businesses the past year has offered opportunities to reflect on how technology can enable efficiency and growth. For pharmacists, who have been key players in helping patients, caregivers and communities through the pandemic, that reflection includes how to increase access to care, quality outcomes and patient experience. With 70 percent of Canada's pharmacists working in the community, their role as healthcare providers is pivotal. From administering vaccines to managing complex drug regimens, pharmacists are among Canada's most accessible healthcare professionals. In addition to dispensing more than 750-million prescriptions each year, pharmacists also provide advice and counselling, prescription renewals, prescribing for minor ailments, and chronic disease management support. They also supply their communities with COVID-19 vaccinations and other important products, delivering $4.7-billion in value and improving access to care while reducing pressure on other parts of the healthcare system. This article looks at what we can expect for the pharmacy of the future, including staying connected, delivering a great patient experience and building a solid business case for technology investments. Like other professionals, pharmacists need to look to the future and ask some critical questions, such as: Are we ready for the new digital expectations and buying behaviors of patients, caregivers and consumers? Can we seamlessly integrate with the rest of the healthcare community? How can we reduce costs and streamline our business? What tools can help us spend more time with patients and their families? Where should we focus to maximize efficiency and productivity?

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