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How Does a Concierge Pharmacy Differ from a Traditional One?

A concierge pharmacy is an exciting new health care option for those looking for an alternative to traditional pharmacy care. A concierge pharmacy is a service-oriented model of pharmacy that places the patient and their health at the heart of what they do. These pharmacies provide personalized, in-depth care that focuses on the individual and their unique needs when it comes to health and medication.

Concierge pharmacies are tailored to the individual and understand that each patient requires a different level of support. Working closely with the patient, the pharmacy team takes the time to get to know them, their needs, lifestyle and any medical issues. The pharmacists work with the patient’s doctor to provide a tailored approach to healthcare. 

At a concierge pharmacy, the emphasis is on providing personalized care to patients. They focus on improving the health outcomes of patients and providing access to medication and healthcare products in a more accessible and personalized way. Through the concierge pharmacy model, pharmacists are able to provide individualized consultation and care, which can involve coordinating with other healthcare providers, and developing personalized plans to address each patient’s unique needs.

This type of pharmacy service provides a higher level of care than a traditional pharmacy. This can include enhanced communication, personalized medication management, and greater access to resources. Patients of a concierge pharmacy can expect to have an advocate on their side that understands their situation and takes the time to provide personalized support and advice. 

Concierge pharmacies offer an array of services that enhance patient health. These services can include comprehensive medication review and reconciliation, access to specialty medications and complex compounding services, coordination with health care providers for medication management, adherence interventions, and patient education, among other services. With these services, concierge pharmacists can help patients better understand their diagnosis, health plan, medications, reduce the risk for adverse drug interactions, and increase the chance that patients will stay adherent to their medical regimens.

The concierge pharmacy model is an innovative way to provide care and medication that is tailored to the individual needs of each patient. By offering personalized service and care, concierge pharmacists can play an important role in improving patient health and outcomes.

Concierge pharmacies are a great way to get personalized care and the attention you need to make sure you are taking your medications correctly and getting the most out of them. The goal of a concierge pharmacy is to provide their patients with an extraordinary healthcare experience. By focusing on the individual, offering enhanced communication and personalized services, these pharmacies help ensure patients receive the best care possible, which leads to better health outcomes. 

When Might I Need a Custom Compounding Pharmacy?

Let’s start with what a compounding pharmacy is and does. A compounding pharmacy is a pharmacy that prepares customized medications for patients. This may include medications that are not available in standard formulations, or medications that require dosage adjustments based on the patient’s individual needs. Some patients may need a medication that is not commercially available, while others may need a medication that is available, but requires a dosage that is not available in big box pharmacies. Additionally, some patients may find that they have sensitivities or allergies to certain ingredients in traditional medications. Compounding pharmacies also prepare custom medications for use in veterinary medicine.

How Does It Work?

When you visit a compounding pharmacy, the pharmacist will take your information and create a medication specifically for you. This process involves taking into account your medical history, any allergies you have, and the results of any recent lab tests. The pharmacist will talk with your doctor and determine the appropriate medication dosage to create a medication for your individual needs.

The compounding pharmacist then selects the appropriate drug ingredients and combines these ingredients in the correct dosages to create the desired medication. The finished product is then dispensed in either pill, capsule, liquid, cream, or other form, whichever is most convenient for you. The custom medication can also have flavoring added as needed, which is especially helpful for children or pets.

Compounded medications can be used to treat a wide variety of conditions, including:

  • Pain management
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Migraines
  • Allergies
  • Skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis
  • Gastrointestinal problems, such as constipation and diarrhea
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Dental issues
  • Dermatological conditions
  • And many others!

What is the Difference Between a Compounding Pharmacy and a Regular One?

If you haven’t needed custom medications before, you may not even be aware that compounding pharmacies exist that specialize in helping you by creating prescription medications to your specifications.

While the two types of pharmacies are similar, the process by which they dispense your medication is very different. A compounding pharmacy creates custom medications from base ingredients for their patients (and their pets) as needed.

Unlike a big box pharmacy that dispenses a pre-mixed formulation, a compounding pharmacist begins with base drugs, combining and preparing them to create a medication to fit the individual patient’s needs.

Because the compounding pharmacist works with base ingredients, the dosage can be adjusted in very small ratios, rather than simply going with the closest commercially available option.

Pharmaceutical manufacturing, in contrast, makes drugs using pre-set formulas and dosages on a huge scale equaling millions of doses and formulas each year. There’s not much room for custom healthcare with that. Many drugs are also formulated for average body weights or primarily tested on one sex or the other, so they are more of a “one size fits all” approach.

Before the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was created, compounding was the only way medications were created and pharmacies were referred to as apothecaries. The pharmacist would assess the patient and take recommendations from the doctor before returning to the apothecary to hand-create a precise formula for the patient. Today, pharmacists at compounding pharmacies still work with patients and their doctors to create custom medications. If you break down the ingredients you’ll find that they are virtually identical from a chemical perspective; but they have been customized to remove an inactive ingredient that a patient might be sensitive to, or changed to another form like pill to liquid. Prescriptions are still required, as with a retail chain pharmacy.

However, there are three big differences between a traditional and compounding pharmacy.

  1. Dosage

A compounding pharmacy can create a custom dosage for you. If a pill you need only comes in 50mg and you need 100mg and don’t want to take two pills, a compounding pharmacy could make it in the proper dosage for you. They can also take into account your height, weight, gender, and age.

  1. Form

A compounding pharmacy can remake your medication into a more convenient form for you. That could include liquid, powder, capsule, cream, or ointment. Making your medication easier to take helps ensure you’ll take it which improves your health outcomes.

  1. Customizing

A compounding pharmacist can create a custom medication that can be added to a food or drink, or have a pleasant flavor added to make it easier to take, which is especially helpful for pets and children.

Here are some of the most common areas that compounding pharmacists help with in developing custom healthcare for patients.

  • Dermatology
  • Hormone therapy
  • Pain management
  • Pediatrics
  • Dentistry
  • Integrative Medicine
  • Ophthalmology
  • Animal/Veterinary Medicine

Who Benefits from Custom Medication?

Prescription drugs and related medications are an essential part of healthcare for many of us. In fact, it’s estimated that about 60% of the U.S. population takes one or more medications. And among those who do, data suggests that 25% take four or more.

While commercially available medication treats many conditions for millions of people, it’s a one-size-fits-all approach. In contrast, when you get your medication compounded, it’s made from scratch, specifically for you, without additives, fillers, preservatives found in many other medications, and in a specific dose that works best for you; not too much and not too little. With compounding, your medications can be customized even further into a dosage form of your liking, like a liquid or a cream.

At Nora Apothecary, our pharmacists can compound a generic drug or can combine different drugs for a patient’s specific custom medication needs. We can remove an allergic ingredient or convert the drug into a custom topical form. With custom compounded medication, we stay more aware of your response to a drug. From there, a custom medication is then created that’s safer and more effective for you. And if it’s easier to take, it’s more likely to be taken at the recommended frequency, which improves health outcomes.

Here are some of the people who can benefit from custom medication:

  • Patients with allergies
  • Children or adults who are averse to certain tastes
  • Patients who can’t swallow pills
  • Patients who need a medication that is on backorder at the chain pharmacies
  • Patients who need a drug that is in short supply
  • Patients who need a different strength for a medication than what is traditionally offered
  • Men and women who want custom and/or combined versions of hormone replacement therapy
  • Patients on hospice or palliative care who have issues that need to be addressed with a different form of medication
  • Patients with a feeding tube that need pills changed to liquid
  • Patients with pets who want an easier or tastier form of the pet’s medication
  • Patients who desire custom acne or skin condition medication
  • Patients with unique conditions, such as those who need eye medications
  • Patients who need dental compounding for a wide range of issues


As you can see, a compounding pharmacy offers many options. Let Nora Apothecary create a custom medication that helps optimize your health.


What is a Compounding Pharmacy?

A compounding pharmacy is a pharmacy that creates customized medications for their patients. This means that the pharmacy can create medications specifically for an individual’s personalized needs, rather than using a standardized medication. Compounded medications can be used to treat a variety of medical conditions, and can also be used to adjust the dosage form of your current medication regimen.

One of the benefits of using a compounding pharmacy is that it allows you to have greater control over your medication. This is because compounded medications can be tailored to meet each patient’s specific needs. For example, if you have difficulty swallowing pills, we can create a liquid form of the medication. Does your child have the same issue or are they sensitive to the dyes and preservatives in commercially available medication? We can change the dosage form and also compound medications without all the additives that chain pharmacy medications have in them. Or if you’re experiencing side effects from your current medication, we can create a purer formulation that removes the fillers, additives, and preservatives that may be causing some side effects. We can also change the form and flavor of medications for pets.

Compounded medications can also be useful if you’re dealing with a unique medical condition. For example, there are some medications that are only available in powder form, and compounding pharmacies can convert these powders into oral suspensions or capsules to make them easier to take.

There are a number of reasons why you might choose to use a compounding pharmacy. Some people prefer compounded medications because they are personalized to them and treat their individual needs. They can also reduce side effects from the conventional one-size-fits-all medications of big box pharmacies. Others like the convenience of having custom-made prescriptions in a form they prefer, such as tablet, liquid, or cream.

Why would I need compounded medications?

Here are some additional situations where a compounded medication would be better for you (or your pet). They include:

  • Changing a formulation to eliminate an inactive ingredient to which you have an allergy or sensitivity
  • Creating a medication that’s unavailable or on backorder
  • Custom creating your medication to a different strength or form