We instruct owners and operators that they have to make this decision. Here is what we know with the independent SP’s we have represented through a sale:
- The competitive landscape is very treacherous. The largest pharmacies own the majority of the market share and they don’t want smaller independents getting in their way. Moreover, the large hospital networks, GPOs, and other health systems/groups are establishing specialty pharmacies. They are keeping pharmacy patients who would have traditionally gone to independents.
- Payors, who are affiliates of the large competitors are reducing access and/or reimbursements. This is squeezing margins. It also creates a stress on the business with audit notices and claims that certain patients are in breach of the payor contracts. In most cases, the independent pharmacy thinks they are in compliance then they are hit with some bogus claim which threatens their contract altogether.
- And is if that were not enough, PBMs and DIR fees associated with Part D plans are overburdening the administration/billing expenses and reducing profits even further. This is what we hear from operators all the time: “I just want to be a pharmacist and business owner, but the PBMs are making it impossible to make money. I can’t ever focus on what I loved about this business in the first place.” If this is you, it may be time to sell.