Friday, June 24, 2011

Shop Rite Pharmacy: My New Bestie!

I routinely take more than ten prescription medications, so I have considerable experience as a pharmacy customer. For years I wasn't really loyal to any one company. If I was shopping at Giant, I would get a scrip filled while I shopped. Otherwise, I might stop by someplace on the way home from my doctor's office. It was a matter of whatever was most convenient for me. Then Rite Aid opened a new store very close to my home, with drive-thru service, which instantly made it the most convenient. Our relationship only lasted about four years. During that time, they made a few mistakes with my prescriptions, but nothing that could be considered truly dangerous, so I dealt with it. The real deal-breaker was the habit they developed of taping up handwritten signs in the drive-thru window, "Drive-thru Closed. Come Inside." They were destroying the only real advantage they had over their competitors, so when a CVS with a drive-thru opened nearby, I became a former Rite Aid customer.

I immediately found CVS to be friendlier and more efficient than Rite Aid. Over the past year or so that I've patronized them, they've never made a mistake with my medication, and I also like their incentive program. A while back I even wrote an entry here about why I liked CVS so much. I still like CVS.

However, I like holding onto my money even more and the spanking new Shop Rite Pharmacy, at Chesapeake Square in Glen Burnie, does that better than any other pharmacy in town.

Now, I know that some other places are offering free antibiotics and low prices on generics, but Shop Rite still has them trumped. Not only are they meeting the competitors' offers of free antibiotics, but they're also offering several common diabetes medications for free. Free antibiotics are helpful to families with young children who might be prone to ear infections and such, but when I can can get half of my diabetes medications that I use every day of my life for free, that truly makes a difference in my medication expenses. In addition, Shop Rite offers generics for less than four dollars, like some of the other pharmacies. But, at Shop Rite, you can get a 90-day supply for less than ten dollars! AND, not only do they accept most insurance plans, but also the health plans of their competitors!

The Shop Rite Pharmacy, in my few visits thus far, has provided service every bit as friendly and efficient as that which won my heart at CVS. But, I didn't make the move without a bit of skepticism. My experiences with in-store pharmacies had been less than thrilling -- Giant, Super Fresh, WalMart and such. For instance, I expected the pharmacy to be located at the far rear or side of the store, requiring customers to navigate through multiple merchandise aisles. They know most of us are susceptible to impulse buying! Secondly, I expected to be routinely be told that my prescription would be ready in 30 or 40 minutes. Again, leave plenty of time for the customer to roam the store and do some impulse buying.

Neither has been the case at Shop Rite Pharmacy. First of all, the Shop Rite Pharmacy may lack the convenience of a drive-thru, but they simply could not make it any easier to reach it from the front door of the store. The photo to the left is taken from the doorway of the Chesapeake Square store. You can actually see the pharmacy from there. The only thing you have to pass to get there is the floral section and some produce - not something I'm terribly likely to buy on impulse. And so far, I've waited less time at Shop Rite than I normally do in the drive-thru of CVS.

So, if saving money is your top priority, but you don't want to sacrifice service or convenience, you owe it to yourself to check out the new Shop Rite Pharmacy!

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