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4 Reasons Hospitals Need an Outpatient Pharmacy

With all the complex departments that already exist in your healthcare organization, adding another department may seem like a daunting and unnecessary task. But, if your hospital does not currently have an outpatient pharmacy, you need to rethink your strategic plan and make room.

Hospitals need an outpatient pharmacy services and here is why:

1.) Patient Satisfaction

Patient satisfaction is crucial to your heath system's success. Leaving the hospital and going to a pharmacy adds additional stressors onto a patient’s already difficult situation. Having all of your patients’ medications ready to go during their discharge, is an obvious way to increase patient satisfaction.

2.) Revenue

An efficient outpatient pharmacy can be a great source of revenue for a hospital when managed correctly. Hospital's can leverage their purchasing power to generate greater margins through buying groups (GPO's) and 340B pricing.

3.) Lower Employee Benefit Costs

Hospital employees need to fill prescriptions, too. The cost for a self-insured hospital to fill an employee’s prescriptions at a non-hospital pharmacy can be extremely high. By strategically creating a plan for employees to use the outpatient pharmacy, you can cut down on your drug spend. Employees, just like patients, will also appreciate the one-stop-shop and not having to make additional trips on their way home from work.

4.) Lower Readmission Rates

Studies have shown that upwards of 20% of hospitalized Medicare patients are back in the hospital within 30 days of discharge. Most of these readmissions could’ve been avoided. Patients often face challenges with prescriptions such as transportation to their pharmacy or lack of knowledge about their medications. By preparing their prescriptions at point of discharge, you not only save the patient time and frustration, you can lower the chances of readmissions.