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NACDS is 'lab for future of health and wellness retailing,' Standley says
April 29th, 2014
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – In taking the reins as chairman of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, Rite Aid Corp. chairman and chief executive officer John Standley said the industry has a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity" to improve health care delivery and patient health outcomes.
New NACDS chairman John Standley (left) accepts the gavel from previous chairman Bob Narveson at the NACDS Annual Meeting.
Standley gave his remarks Tuesday at an NACDS Annual Meeting Business Program after accepting the gavel from Bob Narveson, president and CEO of Thrifty White Pharmacy, who wrapped up his one-year term as NACDS chairman.
"Health care delivery is undergoing historic change, placing unprecedented demands on our business while presenting enormous opportunities to grow," Standley told attendees. "As our individual companies deal with these dramatic changes, my objective this morning is to ensure that everyone — especially our associate members — understands and appreciates the valuable role that NACDS plays in helping us navigate this new health care landscape."
Standley described new Rite Aid health and wellness initiatives that resulted from the company's answer to the question: "What do our customers need and want?" He referred to efforts under way throughout community pharmacy to pursue a vision in which "we can find new ways to provide care beyond prescriptions, improve the health of our patients and demonstrate our value to the health care system."
Rite Aid's initiatives include partnerships with other local health care providers as well as with suppliers of pharmacy and front-end products, Standley noted.
"When you step back and consider the big picture, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help solve perhaps the biggest domestic issue our country is facing, and that's an affordable and sustainable health care system," he explained. "This rapidly changing health care environment has required all NACDS stakeholders to think differently about our core business models and how we can best support the needs of our customers and patients."
To that end, NACDS is "leading the way in educating policy makers about the expanded role of community pharmacy and making sure that our voice is heard during key policy debates," Standley said, adding, "and if you think about it, these issues fall into one of two categories: maintaining our current business model for pharmacies and setting the stage for our business model of the future."
He cited NACDS' efforts to advocate for fair Medicaid pharmacy reimbursement, pharmacist provider status and improved access to medication therapy management (MTM) services, among other issues.
Standley, too, emphasized the value of NACDS meetings and conferences to the industry's evolution, especially the ability of these events to bring current and potential partners together.
"As these stronger partnerships begin to form, NACDS has emerged as a laboratory for the future of health and wellness retailing throughout all channels," he said. "It starts at the Regional Chain Conference in February and continues at this Annual Meeting and the Total Store Expo in August. And later in the year, NACDS Week in New York City has really emerged as another fantastic opportunity for high-level strategic exchange. These meetings fuel the engines of collaboration. They set the bar higher, and they ultimately drive positive change in the health care and consumer products environment."