Sunday 30 March 2014

Marla Ahlgrimm Offers Personal Insight into Developing a Business Plan

Q: In your experience, what are the primary benefits of owning a compounding pharmacy compared to working with a more traditional dispensary?

Marla Ahlgrimm: In general, compounding pharmacies offer a number of different medications that have not been made commercially available for people who are required to take very specific dosages. The first step in starting the business is to obtain a loan through a trusted institution. That will involve the presentation of information such as a personal resume, loan proposal and executive summary to establish one’s fitness as a business owner.

Q: How can I get the ball rolling in this endeavor?

Marla Ahlgrimm: The first is to establish whether the pharmacy will be incorporated as a partnership, a corporation or a sole proprietorship. Have a firm grasp on the different permits and licenses necessary to owning and operating a pharmacy, and then develop an financial statement and business plan.

Q: On the financial statement, what type of information is necessary?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Inventory and equipment, employee training costs, anticipated needs, salaries, utilities, rent, insurance and current financial status are all components of the statement.

Q: Why do I need to create a business plan?

Marla Ahlgrimm: A business plan serves as an objective and exhaustive overview of the current market, as well as the resources, competition, conditions and assumptions necessary for developing long-term success.

Q: What types of insurance and training programs are necessary to begin the process of establishing the pharmacy?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Liability insurance is required, but that’s just the start. You will also need accident, robbery, vandalism, damage and theft insurance in order to protect your business interests. In terms of training staff, use barrier isolators and glove boxes, offer a humidity control unit and HEPA filtration, and remind all employees that they cannot complete their tasks alone as teamwork is a required element. The upside to all this hard work? Starting an individual proprietorship allows a pharmacist to gain control of his or her career, including schedules and many other aspects.


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