NCPA Executive Update

NCPA Executive Update delivers insights on legislative, regulatory, policy, and industry developments from NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey, Pharmacist, MBA, to NCPA members and pharmacy leaders every Friday.

Five Things You May Have Missed ... | NCPA Executive Update | October 20, 2017

by NCPA | Oct 20, 2017

Dear Colleague,

Doug Hoey

"Edutainment" is the blending of education and entertainment. What better place than Orlando, one of the leading entertainment centers of the universe, for family-owned pharmacies to convene to learn where the industry is heading and share strategy ideas? This year's NCPA 119th Annual Convention, just concluded, featured a movie premiere, a TED-like talk, covered the topics important to pharmacy owners, and topped it off with a Stanford-trained physician premiering his first pharmacy-inspired rap.

In case you couldn't join us, here are the top five things you missed.

CPESNSM is the Future of Community Pharmacy
It was the buzz of the convention: The CPESNSM booth in the Exhibit Hall was packed. Many CPESNSM training sessions were standing-room-only. There is much that independent pharmacies do to care for patients in addition to traditional dispensing, and those services are valuable to help payers lower overall health care costs. As of today, 29 local CPESN-affiliated networks have commenced operations, and many are already attracting interest from payers. CPESNSM is a clinically integrated network-a key ingredient to helping these pharmacy networks exist and improve patient care.

What are enhanced services? Think of it as all the things you do for patients that a big box pharmacy can't or won't do that go beyond the traditional PBM contract. In short, CPESNSM is a big win for independent pharmacy — and more importantly, for our patients. To learn more, watch this short video and visit

Hard to believe that a Stanford-trained physician could have thousands of pharmacists roaring with laughter, but our keynote speaker Dr. Zubin Damania, aka ZDoggMD, did it. He told us how outcomes-based, personalized medicine that is leveraged by technology can change health care. His message, delivered with humor and musical parodies, was that the health care of the future (Health 3.0) must be completely patient-focused, which goes right along with the CPESNSM message. Check out the video he created just for us.

Idea Sharing and Shoot the Breeze Sessions
Pharmacy owners and managers tell us one of the benefits of attending the NCPA Annual Convention is the chance to interact with other successful pharmacy owners who are willing to share what's working for them. Nine Shoot the Breeze sessions attracted crowds and plenty of passionate conversation. But those sessions weren't the only opportunities for sharing. Meals, the Opening and Closing Night Parties, Colleagues in Consultation sessions and corridor conversations gave owners, pharmacists and student pharmacists even more opportunities to interact and share.

Building Your Brand
Connecting with customers is the key to building your pharmacy's brand—and your brand is constantly being shaped, whether you know it is or not. That message came through loud and clear from brand guru William Espey of Chipotle, the speaker at our second general session. Espey said that your pharmacy's values matter because they create those all-important customer connections. "Your brand has to be about more than just you," Espey said. He challenged owners to DO more because they want to BE more. We determine the "more" and it becomes our branding message. Another timely message for pharmacy owners ramping up their patient care services in CPESNSM.

A Member of Congress Who Fights for Us and Our Patients
Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Ga.) received two well-deserved standing ovations as he spoke at a general session. Carter, the only pharmacist in Congress, said he'll continue to fight for transparency in prescription pricing and against the overreach of PBMs. And he encouraged every owner to invite their member of Congress to visit and see the work that pharmacists do every day on the front lines of health care. (Contact us and we'll help you plan for a successful visit.)

We learned, we laughed, and we're moving forward with renewed purpose. Now it's time to take all of those great ideas and transfer the meeting energy as much as possible to all of NCPA's members. Even if you weren't able to attend, NCPA will help all members benefit vicariously from those who had a front-row seat.

The bar has been raised. If you weren't there this year, put next year's Convention — Oct. 6-10, 2018, in Boston — on your calendar. Come for the information. Come for the fun. Come for the edutainment!

Doug Hoey

P.S. Did you catch the segment on PBM clawback practices Tuesday night on NBC Nightly News®? "Prescription Price Secrets" featured NCPA member Steve Hoffart, owner of Magnolia Pharmacy in Magnolia, Texas. NCPA and our state partners served as key resources for the story. Check it out and please share the link with your members of Congress and on social media.

P.P.S. Just a quick reminder that tomorrow is National Check Your Meds Day. NCPA has tons of resources to help you.