Pharmacy fills thousands of prescriptions for low-income and uninsured people

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A small pharmacy in Memphis filled thousands of prescriptions for low-income and uninsured people to last them for the next three months.

Instead of its patients worrying about running low on meds during COVID-19, the pharmacy said it wanted to help the newly jobless and uninsured.

The Founder and CEO of Good Shepard Pharmacy showed FOX13’s Amicia Ramsey how they managed to pull off the big prescription drug fill and still maintain social distancing.

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Nearly 500 patients depend on the Good Shepard Pharmacy in Memphis. The non-profit offers prescription drugs to people at no cost or a discounted rate.

Founder and CEO Philip Baker said to avoid services interruption during COVID-19, he decided to have prescriptions filled from May to August.

“We started seeing drug shortages, backorders, and allocations,” said Baker.

So, the pharmacy ordered what pills it needed and prepared to ship nearly 3,000 with a limited staff

“We filled as much as we possibly could through the pharmacy robot. Then we brought in volunteers and pharmacy technician students to help fulfill prescription orders we go run through with the pharmacy robot,” Baker explained.

Baker and his team managed to ship 160 packages in one day.

“At one point we had four delivery drivers in here to ensure everything was getting picked up and delivered,” he said. “Everything did go as smoothly as we could’ve hoped. A little stressful, it was a lot of work and a lot to manage.”

But they got it done and now through a partnership, University of Tennessee of Pharmacy Students are taking calls for new patients through a virtual pharmacy.

One student told FOX13, “The biggest plus side is I can tackle more in a time frame from 9 to 4 p.m. that I would if I were coming and going.”

“If you don’t have an income or you don’t have prescription insurance, then you qualify for free insulin,” Baker said. “For free prescription medication from our pharmacy. Our phone calls have definitely picked up; our enrollments have picked up.”

Good Shepard Pharmacy was recently awarded a $10,000 grant from the Community Foundation in Memphis to help people financially affected by COVID-19.

For more information about its membership and how to get free or discounted medications CLICK HERE.

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