While businesses around the world are closing their doors to prevent the spread of COVID-19, many pharmacies remain open to ensure the public has access to necessary medications. Even though many are working extra hours to keep up with the increased demand and face higher risk of getting sick, pharmacy employees remain dedicated to giving patients the care that they need.
All of us at FLAVORx would like to thank the pharmacists and pharmacy technicians working hard to keep their communities healthy and safe. Despite increased stress that comes with working with the public during a health crisis, pharmacies have shown that their commitment is stronger than ever. Here's what some pharmacy superheroes have been doing to help:
Making Hand Sanitizer
As people rush to protect themselves from COVID-19, stores have had a hard time keeping necessary products like hand sanitizer in stock. To address the critical storage, the FDA is now allowing pharmacies to make hand sanitizer to provide to the public. Drug City Pharmacy in Dundalk, Maryland has been hard at work making enough to give to customers. Pharmacy owner George Fotis explained, "Our job is to help people stay healthy or get better. Whether its a prescription, advice or a pandemic our job as retail pharmacies is to help."
Helping Those in Need
As COVID-19 spread around the country, the Skippack Pharmacy team rallied their community and jumped into action making care bags for seniors. With only 24 hours notice, the group assembled enough bags of sanitary products to supply a local nursing home. Pharmacy owner Dr. Mayank Amin told us, "When the community calls, it is our duty as a community pharmacy to stand up and be there for them and that we have done. We went from a 10 hour operation daily to working around the clock to ensure our community has what they need."
Supporting Others on the Front Line
After Amin of Skippack Pharmacy started receiving calls from local hospitals desperate for PPE, he realized that they needed to do something to help. He organized the Support our Superheroes PPE fund and began raising money to provide this vital equipment to healthcare workers.
He writes on the GoFundMe page, "It has been three weeks since the first presumptive cases of COVID-19 were found in Montgomery County. We have seen the extensive struggle in China, Italy, New York City and now in our own backyards. We cannot and will not just sit around and watch." At the time of publication, the pharmacy had raised over $2,500.
Pharmacies are also making sure local first responders have the tools they need to stay healthy in the line of duty. Pictured below, the staff of Robinson Drug Shop in Mendham, New Jersey and Edwards Discount Drugs in Lucedale, Mississippi have both compounded hand sanitizer to donate to first responders. How awesome is that?!
Taking Extra Precaution
Because pharmacies are remaining open while other businesses close, they've changed their daily operation to keep customers and staff healthy. Many pharmacies have closed their store area and ask that customers use their drive-thru window or curbside pick-up. Others offer free delivery to allow customers to stay home.
Popular Pharmacy in Rio Grande City, Texas has been encouraging customers to use their free delivery service. They have limited pick-up to curbside and drive thru in an effort to keep customers safe. Although social distancing has drastically changed pharmacy operation, pharmacy staff are doing everything they can to make sure customers have the medicine and supplies that they need.
All of us at FLAVORx are blown away by the dedication and perseverance shown by our pharmacy partners. Please join us in giving a huge round of applause to all pharmacy heroes selflessly working to keep our communities safe during these uncertain times! As Amin of Skippack Pharmacy told us, "While there are many unknowns one thing is for sure, we will get through this...and we will get through this together!"