|Drake -Hogan Pharmacy Opens, Serves Black Community|
|Local News Headlines|
|Written by Chianti C. Cleggett|
|Thursday, 28 June 2012 10:20|
photo credit: Myrna Moline
For residents of the Norwood community, visiting the pharmacy just became more convenient. On June 20th, the Drake-Hogan Pharmacy opened at 2402 15th Ave. N. providing a much-needed service to the area.
“We’re really a beacon of hope around here,” said Jonathan Dunning, founder, CEO and board president of Synergy Corporation, which owns the pharmacy. “This was missing on the north side of town. People stopped identifying the north side with healthcare in this Black community. Jobs left and access to healthcare left.”
The pharmacy is inside the building which houses the primary care facility, which opened in 2010. Dunning said the center treats more than 200 Birmingham area patients per day. Now, patients can leave a doctor’s visit and fill their prescriptions only steps away.
Jenny Lynn Bartley, pharmacy manager, is focused on providing superior patient care. “I try to serve the patients in other ways, not only through medication,” said Bartley, who wants to help her patients understand the medications they are taking and why they need them. “We are excited to be in the community and to provide medication at a reasonable price.”
In addition to being convenient, the center is also welcoming and comparable to others in more affluent neighborhoods. “This facility is A-1. It’s very nice,” said Pamela Watson, director of Synergy Medical. “The service is efficient, and people are handled with love and care. If there is no love and passion for the people we serve, then why are we here?”
Dunning agreed. “Often there is a bias or prejudice when providers are giving a discount. We make sure people are treated with dignity and respect,” he said. “Poor people want to be a part of something with quality as much as others.”
Drake-Hogan Pharmacy (205.453.9096) accepts major insurances and is open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For added convenience, the pharmacy offers a mail-order component to patients.
Dunning, who suffered from asthma as a child, empathizes with patients who are in need of immediate medical care. “As a sick Black kid, my mother had to travel all over town to get me treatment,” he recalled. He said those days of suffering and seeking care helped to shape his present career as the head of companies that provide healthcare and discounted medications. “For me, there is no better thing,” said Dunning, who named the pharmacy in honor of his grandfathers.