T.J. Griffin: Leading with Accountability

How do you inspire your workforce to live your mission and values to benefit your clients?

It’s really about the team that’s around me. I surround myself with people who are as passionate as I am. When you have a team like that and you instill in them similar aspirations, you create momentum to hit your goals because everyone is focused on caring for patients and serving our clients. They are the inspiration for what we do.

How does PharMerica bring its local expertise to the heart of every community?

A lot of what we do is about America, not PharMerica. We are in the heart of every community. Our staff are little league coaches, concession stand volunteers, part of vaccination clinics, and neighbors. We encourage our long-term care pharmacy directors to get involved in the communities they serve, and we empower them to run their pharmacies in a way that makes their community proud. But it doesn’t stop with the pharmacy directors. This philosophy extends to all staff, including technicians, drivers, pharmacists and everyone else.

What do you want clients to say about PharMerica?

I’d like our clients to say that our priorities are care, commitment, and collaboration. We pride ourselves on partnering with them in taking care of the residents and patients they serve. We share their commitment to the best possible patient outcomes and client success. And we collaborate with them in unique ways that best meet the needs of the communities they serve.

We do this in many ways. First of all, we offer solutions for improved efficiency and savings. We continue to adapt the way we do business to address long-term care clients’ pain points by providing staffing solutions, training, mock surveys to help facilities avoid deficiencies, opportunities for med pass consolidation and efficiencies, medication packaging, days’ supply, post-discharge medication management and more.

Next, we ensure transparency in data sharing. We give clients the information they need to celebrate successes and understand what is working, as well as identify opportunities for change or improvement. But we don’t just talk and share information; we listen. We understand the importance of hearing what our clients have to say and collaborating with them on what works for the best outcomes.

Finally, we consistently go the extra mile. It’s not enough to do what’s required. We believe in exceeding expectations and setting new standards of excellence.

What are the top 3 unique things that set PharMerica apart from the competition?

The foundation of what we do is in our 3 pillars: medication availability, cost containment and reduction, and compliance and education. And these are built on our premier pharmacy operations and service. We don’t just say claim to be world-class; we back it up with data.

For example, when we say we have 98% or more on-time deliveries, we have the facts to prove it. That’s because we work closely with delivery vendors and our own delivery drivers, and we use software to track to the minute when every medication is delivered. We also have RxNow machines and back-up pharmacies so we can get medications into nurses’ hands quickly so they don’t have to wait for a pharmacy delivery from 75 miles away for a new admission. And that’s really important for our clients because when someone is admitted from a hospital, they come with nothing; and a nurse often has to be able to provide medication services to them right away.

And it goes beyond delivery. We have a unique opioid stewardship program to help with proper pain management and diversion control. We have another program to make sure antipsychotic drug usage is as low as possible. Since we can measure the results of these efforts, our facilities can share these successes and capabilities in their marketing. They can say they have a good pharmacy partner with great data and outcomes to set themselves apart in a competitive long-term care environment.

PharMerica has an NPS score of 51 when the average in long-term care pharmacy is about 26. How did you accomplish that?

We are great stewards of information. We are in constant communication with facilities about a myriad of issues. For example, during the pandemic, our Illuminate educational platform produced more education, policies and procedures, PPE and vaccinations than any other long-term care pharmacy services provider. When clients or non-clients needed COVID-19 resources, they came to PharMerica. In fact, over 10,000 unique long-term care leaders attended at least one of our webinars.

Healthcare is an ever changing world and it’s important to have a good team that is on top of all the changes that impact the health of our seniors. And when you are at the forefront of helping them make good decisions for facilities, that’s a true partnership. And that is reflected in our NPS. We are proud to have over twice the average pharmacy score, and we work every day to improve on it.

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