Springfield Regional plans retail pharmacy with goal of reducing hospital readmissions

One of the top reasons why patients are readmitted to the hospital is that they don’t fill needed prescriptions. As part of an initiative to reduce hospital readmissions, Springfield Regional Medical Center will open a retail pharmacy in the hospital in early February. 

An estimated 40 percent of patients never have their prescriptions filled. The new pharmacy, which will be located in the hospital lobby, will make it easier for discharged patients to fill their prescriptions before they leave for home. Emergency department patients may also utilize the service. Hospital employees may utilize the pharmacy for prescriptions, including 90-day fills for many of their chronic medications. 

Hospital discharge planners meet with patients before they leave. They follow up with a phone call to every patient within 48 hours. The intent is to make sure they understand their discharge instructions, they understand how to take their medications and that they’ve made their follow-up appointment.

The ultimate goal is for patients to continue their proper recovery and avoid a potentially costly visit to the emergency department or an avoidable hospital readmission.

The new pharmacy, a common practice among hospitals, is not marketed to the general community and is not intended to compete with community pharmacies. By early 2017, 23 Mercy Health hospitals will have outpatient/ambulatory pharmacies. Recently, Ohio State and Cleveland Clinic expanded their retail/outpatient/ambulatory pharmacy footprint to provide better access to care. 

Community Mercy Med Assist will continue to work with local pharmacies, as well as the hospital retail pharmacy, to help meet the needs of individuals who need financial assistance with their prescriptions. 

The pharmacy will be located in the area formerly occupied by outpatient registration and waiting, which have moved to the Information Desk area. 

Construction is underway and expected to be completed in early February. Hours are tentatively scheduled for 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Monday thru Friday, and 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. on Saturdays. Initially it will be closed on Sundays.