SpotRx wants to introduce the future of pharmacy using its automated pharmaceutical kiosks, and southern Arizona is the starting line.
SpotRx, a subsidiary of MedAvail Technologies that launched in 2018, recently partnered with Green Valley Recreation, a chain of community centers in southern Arizona. The businesses are placing SpotRx pharmaceutical kiosks in three of 13 GVR member centers.
These “souped-up vending machines” allow users to pick up over-the-counter and prescription medications, transfer a prescription or consult a doctor or pharmacist electronically.
SpotRx already has one kiosk in the CareMore health clinic in Green Valley and four kiosks in downtown Tucson, as well as a brick-and-mortar location in each Phoenix and Tucson.
“What we’re trying to do is offer access,” said Will Misloski, SpotRx chief marketing officer. “And that’s one of the things GVR wanted to be able to provide is that access and convenience for their members. And so, through discussions, it’s just something that seemed like a good fit, to partner together and be able to offer this service to GVR members.”
Green Valley, a census-designated area near Tucson, is largely populated by retirees, but the community is “very active,” Misloski said.
“They’re trying to stay healthy; they want to have an active lifestyle,” he said. “We want to be able to give them access to their medications.”
GVR is an “essential part” of the community in Green Valley, and the majority of homeowners’ associations in the area are involved with GVR as well, making the member centers a convenient location for SpotRx kiosks, Misloski said.
“Our members might start their days with yoga, followed by a ceramics class or game of pinochle, and then maybe they play a few matches of pickleball before lunch,” said Miles Waterbury, communications specialist and fitness coordinator at GVR. “Our members lead busy lives and will benefit from easy access to hundreds of over-the-counter and prescription medications SpotRx stocks in its kiosks.”
Aside from health care services, prescription drugs are what keep people healthy, Misloski said.
“When you look at SpotRx, our service is really two things: kiosks and free home delivery,” he said. “The majority of our business is the kiosk, but what that kiosk does, what our service does, is it provides access.”
Misloski said his research — which is always ongoing, as he often visits the communities SpotRx is a part of — has told him that many people do not enjoy their pharmacy experience. Customers often complain of long wait times and sub-par customer service at typical big-box pharmacies, he said.
“The current pharmacy experience doesn’t put the control into the consumer’s hands,” Misloski said. “When I think about what we’re building and what we’re allowing consumers, we’re putting the pharmacy experience in the consumer’s hands. We’re letting them get their prescription drugs when and where they want it.”
SpotRx is a disruptor in the health care industry, he said: “Look what Netflix did to Blockbuster, or look what Uber is doing to the taxi industry.”
Consumer choice is a top priority in many different areas of retail today, and what SpotRx really wants to do is give people options, Misloski said. The pharmaceutical kiosks are the “core differentiator” for the business, but home delivery and in-person pharmacies play a key role, too, he said.
“When we built our pharmacies — our pharmacy in Phoenix and our pharmacy in Tucson — they weren’t built to be consumer-facing at all,” Misloski said. “But they’re full pharmacies. They have pharmacists; they have technicians. We have patients who come into our pharmacies. They want that pharmacy experience.”
In addition to convenience and access, SpotRx wants to bring back the “hometown pharmacy feel” that seems long-gone, he said.
“What we allow our pharmacists to do is spend time with patients,” Misloski said. “If the patient has questions on the phone or at the kiosk, or even when a patient comes in, we allow our pharmacists to spend as much time as the patient needs to make sure the patient understands, or their medication’s being managed.”
Another unique feature of the SpotRx kiosks is that people can use them with or without insurance. If a customer does not have insurance, or if medications are not covered, they can still save up to 80 percent on a product, according to SpotRx.
“I love our business,” Misloski said. “We’re building a business, but at the end of the day, when I think about what we’re really providing and the way we provide it, our core value… is caring.”
Misloski said he is in Green Valley often and has heard a lot of positive feedback about the SpotRx kiosks.
“SpotRx is grateful for the partnership and support from Green Valley Recreation Inc. and the community,” said Ed Kilroy, CEO of MedAvail Technologies. “We look forward to continued expansion of our new way to pharmacy.”
Misloski said the SpotRx team in Arizona is excited and driven to make a difference in people’s lives.
“They’re seeing the difference it’s making in people’s lives and helping them stay adherent to their medicine, and it’s been a cool thing,” he said.
Photo by user Sonya on Flickr.