Becoming Our Patient’s “Pharmacy Home”

July 15, 2016 by

We’ve had a lot of interest in our most recent blog post and wanted to share some additional thoughts from the Director of Pharmacy, Rafael Saenz.

One writer acknowledged that this change is impressive and represents great progress, but wondered aloud how we are going to compete with the CVS across the street (and their other stores), noting that although they are the most expensive pharmacy in town, they give great service and are convenient for our faculty and staff?

In response, Rafael notes:  “I can appreciate this perspective and can authentically say that it is the core reason why we needed to do a better job for our patients”.  He provides additional updates to help reshape this perspective:

Increased convenience while you work:

  • A new UTEAM Connection window for employees and their families for faster turn-around and less wait time.
  • The meds-to-beds program is designed to reduce nursing and patient time traveling to our pharmacy. Meds will be brought to the bedside for patients who are being discharged. And soon, patients receiving infusions at the Couric Cancer Center will be able to fill their prescriptions from their infusion chair.
  • An upgrade to the fulfilment system and our clinical staff functions. We are completely integrated with the IP and Ambulatory EMR.
  • UVA clinical pharmacists are trained to provide patients with the safest and most comprehensive clinical care in the Commonwealth.
  • You can get most of your vaccinations from our pharmacists.

Benefits for all patients, regardless of their ability to pay:

  • Our indigent care services are comprehensive.
  • We assist patients in receiving their meds free from the manufacturer and walk them through logistics of subsidy programs.
  • We cover those who have been rejected by other pharmacies.

Savings for patients:

  • In many cases, UVA Pharmacies provide patients, with drugs at a cheaper price point.
  • We’ve been able to do this while maintaining a healthy bottom line.

Access through a mail delivery process:

  • Meds can be delivered any prescription straight to a patient’s home at their request.
  • No need to even come to our pharmacy.

He adds:  There are many more changes that we have embarked on in the past 3 years. These are just some highlights. We welcome the opportunity to earn everyone’s business. We not only want to be the pharmacy services provider of choice for our patients, but strive to be all of our patients’ “Pharmacy Home.” I know it will be difficult to regain lost business after years of perceived poor service, but we are truly making an effort to rebrand, re-image and become the best pharmacy possible.

I’d be happy to take any questions or address any comments in person if desired.


Rafael Saenz, PharmD, MS, FASHP
Administrator, Pharmacy Services

Filed Under: Pharmacy