WhidbeyHealth Community Pharmacy opens in Coupeville
— Created September 29, 2021 by Kathy Reed
By Kathy Reed
With a snip of a scissor and cheers and applause from a small crowd of spectators, WhidbeyHealth officially opened its community pharmacy in Coupeville last week. The facility is located in the old Wells Fargo Bank building at 7 NE Birch Street, next to the medical center.
The new facility, which is open to the public six days a week, represents the first time in more than six years residents of Central Whidbey Island have a place to fill prescriptions without having to drive to the north or south end of the island.
“This is a promise delivered,” said WhidbeyHealth CEO Ron Telles. “The board took the initiative. This is something we’ve wanted to do for a long time.”
“When Lind’s Pharmacy closed six years ago, the community spoke up,” said WhidbeyHealth board president Ron Wallin. “There have been lots of hoops to jump through and I know the community wanted it quicker, but just as the hospital has stepped up with community clinics, we knew we needed to do the best we can for our community with this pharmacy.”
“I am excited and elated,” said Tony Triplett, WhidbeyHealth pharmacy director. “It has been a long project, but it is well worth it for our community. The ease and convenience of having the pharmacy here means we will be able to provide prescriptions for our patients…and continue our patient-focused care.”
As noted, the new pharmacy enables medical center patients or their family members to pick up prescriptions upon a patient’s discharge. The former bank building already had infrastructure in place to provide a drive through window; former teller windows inside make for perfect drop off, pick up and consultation windows; and the small lobby provides a bit of room for over-the counter medications to be offered for sale. The old bank vault offers safe, secure storage for medications.
Several of those attending the ribbon cutting last week spoke of how the new community pharmacy will be able to close a gap in service that has been missing for several years.
“When Lind’s closed, the demand for a neighborhood pharmacy didn’t go away,” said Island County Commissioner Melanie Bacon. “It is so wonderful to have this here for patients and for residents who live and work here.”
“I couldn’t be more thrilled for our community,” said Coupeville Mayor Molly Hughes. “This is such a natural fit with the hospital here. It will be such a convenience to be able to drop off a prescription and have it filled here. I could not be more thrilled and thankful [WhidbeyHealth] made this happen.”
Pharmacy hours will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday; it will be closed from 1 to 1:30 p.m. for lunch. Saturday the pharmacy is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the facility is closed on Sunday.
In all, it took about a year to complete the project. Now staff members say they are ready to get to work.
“We are in such a unique position to provide a level of care not found anywhere else on the island,” said Teresa Avery, pharmacy manager. “I am excited to build our team and I look forward to serving you. Please come in and meet us.”
You can find more information on the WhidbeyHealth Community pharmacy by following the link online at whidbeyhealth.org or call 360-678-8640.