Phar­ma­cist cau­tious over dis­count

Isis Town and Country - - Health -

LO­CAL phar­ma­cist Daniel Mar­shall, from Childers Phar­macy, says he is pleased with the over­all deal be­tween phar­ma­cies and the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment.

But Mr Mar­shall said it was too early to know if small phar­ma­cies, such as his Childers busi­ness, would pass on the $1 dis­count to cus­tomers.

“I think the gen­eral trend is prob­a­bly the dis­counts saved on pre­scrip­tions will be ab­sorbed and other prices may in­crease to make up for that,” he said.

“That benefits the dis­coun­ters and makes it harder for the in­de­pen­dents and ru­ral phar­ma­cies that may not have the pre­scrip­tion vol­ume the dis­count phar­ma­cies have.”

Mr Mar­shall said he wel­comed the re­mu­ner­a­tion for phar­ma­cies for pri­mary care ser­vices.

“We’ve been of­fer­ing pri­mary care ser­vices for a long time and phar­ma­cists are of­ten the first port of call,” he said.

“Some peo­ple can’t get in to see GPs so they come to us.”

Mr Mar­shall said the ex­ten­sion of the ex­ist­ing phar­macy lo­ca­tion rules – rules that re­stricted new phar­ma­cies from open­ing near ex­ist­ing phar­ma­cies – was also a win for small phar­ma­cies.

“There has been an in­crease in com­pe­ti­tion dur­ing the past few years from ware­houses and su­per­mar­kets,” he said.

“I think it’s a nec­es­sary thing to keep the small phar­ma­cies vi­able.”

PHOTO: JIM ALOUAT

WEL­COME NEWS: Lo­cal phar­ma­cist Daniel Mar­shall, from Childers Phar­macy, says he is pleased with the re­cent changes made to the way phar­ma­cies are gov­erned.

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