Health

Saturday 23 August 2014

New pharmacy chain: We will give you cheaper medicines for €25 membership fee

NO REPRO FEE
15-1-14
PICTURE SHOWS pharmacist and Healthwave CEO Shane OSullivan at the launch of the store in Dundrum town centre.PIC:Naoise Culhane -no fee
NEW HEALTHWAVE PROMISES CHEAPER PRESCRIPTION MEDICINES IN IRELAND: Dundrum-based pharmacy matches cross-border prices for generic medications. "Despite numerous price drops in recent years, Ireland is still one of the most expensive countries in the world to buy medicine and particularly prescription medication. However, Healthwave, a new pharmacy based in Dundrum with an online channel, is set to disrupt the Irish market significantly by providing medications, prescription and over the counter (OTC), at a huge cost saving to the consumer" said pharmacist and Healthwave CEO Shane OSullivan at the launch of the store in Dundrum town centre.
Pic:Naoise Culhane-no fee
Pharmacist and Healthwave CEO Shane O'Sullivan

A NEW US-style pharmacy is to charge customers a membership fee in exchange for cheaper medicines.

Regular patrons purchasing inhalers, stomach drugs and cholesterol-lowering medication stand to make significant savings, it is claimed.

The Healthwave chemist in Dundrum, Dublin, says that it will be able to match the prices charged by stores in the North.

Pharmacist Shane O'Sullivan intends to charge consumers a €25 annual membership fee and then offer discounts at the till.

He said that prices will drop by as much as 50pc because his store will primarily offer generic medicine and focus on keeping overhead costs low.

For example, a month's supply of cholesterol lowering Atorvastatin 10mg would retail at €4.95 to members compared to a typical pricetag of €10.42 in many other pharmacies -- a saving of €66 over a year.

And a month's supply of blood pressure drug Ramipril 10mg would cost members €4.95 rather than a more typical price of €13.89, a saving of more than €100 in a year.

For asthma sufferers a months's supply of Montelukast 4mg would cost €4.95 compared to a normal price of €25.65 for non-members -- a saving of nearly €250 in a year.

Mr O'Sullivan said the €25 fee is refundable if you do not save that much over the year.

"We want to make medicines cheaper so that people do not have to travel to the North to buy them, and we would hope to get a high volume of repeat business as a result," he said.

RE-ORDER

The savings quoted were for its healthpass membership scheme compared to the prices his pharmacy would charge one-off customers which would be in line with those charged in some big pharmacy chains -- although prices can vary considerably.

Mr O'Sullivan said that he had a keen interest in technology and would also offer an app shortly, allowing customer re-order prescriptions online, as well as offering pill reminder alerts and barcode price scans.

Irish Independent

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