Larsen Service Drug Finds Will-Call System a Delight

This case study written by Bruce Kneeland was originally published in Kneeland’s Notes, July 2019. Click here to view it on LinkedIn.

Larry and Debbie Larsen own two well-established community pharmacies in the northwestern corner of North Dakota. Their flagship location is in Watford City and provides a variety of pharmacy services and has a great front-end. They have a soda fountain, a large selection of professional nutritional supplements, cards, gifts, school supplies, toys, and two photo kiosks.


But, make no mistake, the pharmacy is the backbone of the enterprise and is supported with a full-array of pharmacy technology. They have a ScriptPro 200, RxSafe, Eyecon and Kirby Lester pill counters all connected to their Rx30 pharmacy system. And, they have a robust medication synchronization program, and actively encourage patients to use their mobile app and web-based refill programs.


According to Jenna Wahlstrom, PharmD., daughter of Larry and Debbie, they felt they were missing out on one critical piece of pharmacy technology. So, as members of Pharmacy Development Services (PDS) they attended the PDS Super Conference in February 2018 with the specific idea of checking into automated will-call management systems.


Wahlstrom says Larry and Debbie had originally seen the scripClip™ system at NCPA’s annual convention and had been intrigued. At the PDS show they saw a few companies with competitive solutions, some very elaborate and expensive that required significant reconfiguration of the pharmacy department. Ultimately, they decided the scripClip system by [InterLink AI] was the system for them.


A couple key features stood out according to Wahlstrom. First, the system’s flashing lights just make for an impressive presentation. And she says, that feeling has been confirmed by countless comments from patients now that the scripClip system has been installed for just over a year.


Second, she says was simplicity. From a remodel, reconfiguration standpoint all they had to do was replace their clear plastic will-call bags with the new scripClip bags and install some simple-to-use software. The new bags come with a radio frequency-controlled LED unit embedded in the handle that flashes when the clerk types in the patients name or phone number.


“Of course,” she adds, “The [InterLink AI] install team hooked the system up to our pharmacy management system and trained our staff.” She says the new system was up and running in a matter of hours.


The next question I asked was; “Why would you spend several thousand dollars on a will-call system?” She responded by saying they wanted to improve customer service! Wahlstrom says their pharmacy is busy and that means at rush times there are several people in line waiting to pick-up their medicine. “Before when someone came in, we’d ask them their name and then spend 15 seconds to a minute or more thumbing through all the “S’s” looking for the right Smith.” Now they just enter the person’s name, birth date, or phone number and the bag lights up and they are able to get the script almost immediately.


But she says there is even more. The scripClip system, in concert with their pharmacy system, lets the pharmacy staff know if there are multiple bags for a particular person, or, if there are other prescriptions filled for other members of that person’s family. Being able to make sure the person gets all their medication, for all their family members without any fumbling through dozens of bags has proven to be a real customer service improvement, according to Wahlstrom.


So, the final questions, “If you had it to do all over again would you still buy the system?” Wahlstrom says, “Absolutely, I couldn’t be more delighted.”