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Dr. Cohen received a B.S. in pharmacy from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and a Pharm.D. from Midwestern University Chicago College of Pharmacy (MWU). After owning an independent pharmacy for many years, he moved into the corporate sector as Director of Pharmacy for Dominick's Finer Foods (a division of Safeway). Today he serves as Senior Manager, Product Development, Corporate Innovations for Walgreens. Dr. Cohen has been recognized nationally for his role in bringing patient care to the forefront of community pharmacy practice. He holds adjunct faculty positions at UIC and MWU, as well as serving on both colleges' advisory committees. Dr. Cohen has served as Chair of the Administration Section of the American Pharmacists Association—Academy of Pharmacy Practice and Management and on the Board of Directors of the Illinois Pharmacists Association.

After completing this chapter, readers should be able to

  1. Describe the evolution of merchandising in pharmacy from the beginning of the twentieth century to current practices used today.

  2. Identify merchandising techniques that enhance the awareness and use of the pharmacy department as a health care destination for patients.

  3. Explain how pharmacy layout and merchandising techniques affect consumers' senses.

  4. Identify and discuss the implications of ineffective merchandising in a pharmacy.

  5. Evaluate the impact of merchandising on the financial success of a pharmacy.

Mary Quint, a third-year doctor of pharmacy student, was home recently to attend a family gathering. There was much ado about Mary's progress in pharmacy school. Her family was asking numerous questions about school, her classes, her job, and her future. As the conversation continued, Mary found the family involved in a discussion about the different pharmacies in town. The family had a full range of opinions that addressed everything from the location of the store, to the pharmacist, to the store hours.

Mary was impressed with the conversation. She had never thought much about the issues being discussed by her family. It seemed that her pharmacy, Middletown South Pharmacy, is the least liked by her family. Middleton South Pharmacy is perceived to be an “old standard” in the community. It is a traditional drugstore, built on a corner in the center of town. They have limited parking, a smaller front of the store where nonprescription items are sold, a nice prescription department, and an old-fashioned soda fountain is still a busy part of the business. While her family spoke highly of their memories of Middleton South Pharmacy (and particularly of the treats at their soda fountain), they also said that it is “just a regular drugstore” and doesn't offer any of the conveniences and new pharmacist services the other pharmacies are providing.

Her family's favorite pharmacy in town is the new chain pharmacy (Healthway Pharmacy). Healthway Pharmacy is bright and open, making it easy to find items. The staff is friendly and is always doing something to make the store look nice. As people shop, they often ...

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