Working as a pharmacist can become exhausting after a while. You’re asked to work longer hours to accommodate customers. Mega-corporations demand that you meet certain quotas and fill out tons of paperwork. All of this can add to your stress level.
To improve the pharmacy’s profit margin, you may be asked to do more even as they cut your staff. This is what is driving many to consider quitting or starting their own business. Thankfully, there is a world out there outside working in a pharmacy setting and tons of opportunities for skilled pharmacists with enough determination and a sharp business sense.
Here are 8 startup ideas every pharmacy professional should consider.
Epigenetics is the study of genetic variations caused by environment and lifestyle. If you’re an epigenetic coach, you can offer truly personalized medical advice based on someone’s lifestyle and genetic information. You could offer advice on diet, vitamins, medical treatment, sleep, mental performance and stress management. This area is growing, and you may be able to use it to sell complementary products in your pharmacy.
Run a Vitamin Shop.
Vitamin shops sell a variety of food supplements, anti-aging products, weight loss products and even herbal remedies. You could take things to the next level by making niche products. Ensure that you choose the right kind of empty capsules and make batches of nutritional supplements or holistic products that your customers demand. You’ll be able to attract customers who can’t find these things anywhere else in your area.
This is a very niche business, but it makes a world of difference in the lives of patients. For example, you could provide expert medical advice for patients considering or currently taking hormonal supplements. One such example is women going through perimenopause for instance. Note that you can advise patients on non-pharmaceutical solutions for hormonal imbalances in addition to providing hormone testing, delivering hormones and helping them manage the side effects.
Complementary Care Provider.
Pharmacists and other medical professionals could contract with physician offices to provide patient care. Nutritional counseling, weight loss advice, blood sugar management, pharmacological testing, pain management, post-discharge follow-up, management of prior authorizations and counseling for medically complex patients are all potential services you could offer. Another niche you could enter is travel medicine. Provide both the medications they need to take when traveling abroad and any vaccinations they require.
You could become a patient advocate, helping people navigate the complex bureaucracy of medical systems. You might provide this service to all clients or specialize in specific areas such as helping patients age in peace. You could give them advice on how to get medications delivered to their home, arrange services to help them remain in their home and aid them in living their life as independently as possible. This is a great option if you’re ready to take a more human role.
Medication Safety Consultant.
Large hospitals have dedicated medication safety pharmacists. Their job includes designing medication regimens to minimize adverse events and prevent medication related errors. Small hospitals often lack the budget for a full time professional in this role, resulting in demand for consultants. You could contract with several facilities to create a full-time position for yourself.
Business Coaching for Pharmacists.
One business opportunity for pharmacists is to close their retail practice and advise others on how to improve the operations of their own pharmacy. You might help them move into complementary care or add more profitable services to their roster. For example, you might help them add travel medicine and travel vaccinations to the list of services they provide. Or you may advise them on how to set up a 24-hour pharmacy.
Drug marketing is one way you could leverage your pharmaceutical expertise and knowledge while earning a decent living. You would either earn a salary or commission on medications you sell for pharmaceutical companies. You could work for a single drug company or work for several different companies.
If you’re tired of filling an endless stream of prescriptions or the frustrations that come with your current role, know that there are many businesses you could start that leverage your expertise and fill your patients’ needs. The real question is what new career path is a better fit.