Yesterday, Amazon the US-based e-commerce company announced the purchase of the online pharmacy PillPack for about US$1billion in the US. PillPack is a licensed online pharmacy that ships medication to 49 of the 50 US states.
PillPack offers a full service to sort multiple medications by dose and deliver them directly to the client’s door. The company’s CEO Worldwide Consumer of Amazon, Jeff Wilke, released an official press release about the acquisition. “PillPack provides a visionary pharmacy experience through technology and we want to work together with them to continue making it easy for people,” he wrote. The completion of this acquisition is expected to be closed by the second half of 2018.
The same day of this acquisition several international and national news reported Wall Street experienced a half-day loss of 0.12 percent in the S&P health sector but closed the day with a 0.17 percent gain.
Also, the retail sector in the pharmaceutical industry, pharmacies and auto service companies, feel concerned about this purchase. Only, yesterday after Amazon officially announced the purchase of PillPack, Walmart announced a stock loss of nearly US$3billion in value.
Consumers are showing a greater inclination to buy products online and pharmaceutical products are not an exception. The Pharmaceutical Journal says e-pharmacy, a term to refer to e-commerce for pharmacies, offers a major benefit to patients because it removes intermediate steps between manufacturers and consumers.
The emergence of the e-pharmacy model raises the question about the survival of face-to-face sales in pharmacies. While the trend of buying pharmaceutical products online is rising worldwide and the increasing access to internet is propelling this trend, the Pharmaceutical Journal says there will always be a need for face-to-face sale.
Also, the journal highlighted the need to introduce regulatory laws to pass electronic prescriptions and guarantee pharmacovigilance for the medicines to ensure patient safety. So, this buys enough time for the retail sector to start seeking for new solutions that ensure a better client compliance, personalize the customer experience and use digital platforms to create better communication with the client.