Every day, millions of people pay a visit to their local pharmacy to have a new prescription filled or to refill an old one. Almost a half of all Americans have had at least one prescription filled within the last 30 days. If you consider that there are 2.6 billion prescriptions being filled each year, you probably realize that there is an overwhelming amount of data being generated. The growing industry standard of using of point-of-sale (POS) systems in pharmacies opens the opportunity to collect all of the data and harness it to provide smoother operations, better care, and better business. There are several key areas that data analysis within POS systems are improving pharmacies:
- Prescription authentication. Experts estimate that as much as 10% of prescriptions are counterfeit. The data collected in pharmacy point of sale systems make it possible for signatures to be analyzed and areas of potential fraud to identified.
- Real-time information. Pharmacy managers can run reports in real-time to analyze the medications dispensed, their claim codes, insurance pay rates, and fees paid. In this way, managers can get a true picture of the pharmacy’s profits for the day. This also brings to light billing errors on a claim that will get kicked back so that they can be corrected and avoid accounting issues.
- Better care for patients. Incorrect medication usage is the source of as many as 10% of hospitalizations. Using data from pharmacy POS software, pharmacies have identified common conditions where medication is used incorrectly or not adhered to. Some pharmacies have created talking points for pharmacists who are consulting patients that data analysis identify as a potential risk of medication misuse. POS data improves medication adherence by auto-refilling prescriptions and issuing reminders to patients so that they don’t forgo refilling their prescriptions. Some open POS systems actually have data on prescriptions patients are filling elsewhere (withholding pharmacy and doctor’s information for privacy) so that a complete profile of the patient’s medication regime is available and conflicting medications aren’t issued.
- Targeted marketing. Studies show that pharmacies account for as much as 70% of the sales within a drugstore. One of the the biggest advantages to the data available through POS systems is the ability to analyze the shopping habits of customers and offer them promotions that improve their experience. Data collected from POS systems can report how often a customer visits a store, what purchases they make along with their medication, and other loyalty programs and promotions. The opportunity to track what else customers are purchasing when they fill a prescription and give them specific promotions huge benefit to having a pharmacy POS system.
Does your pharmacy have a POS system? How is the data that is collected from the POS system used to improve operations? Please leave us a comment with your input.