most pharmacies, including Walgreen, staple a printout to the prescription bag listing what the drug is generally used for, precautions, adverse side effects -- usually two to three paragraphs of information. This has become commonplace over the last three years or so. There is no additional fee and they all provide it without asking.
Most of the counseling, PAL's,(patient advisory lavels) were the direct result of the federal government passing a law requiring the pharmacist to counsel Medicaid recipients. What happened after that was the state board of pharmacies took it 10 steps further but to their advantage since they are pharmacist's and they make the rules ! Most states it was a executive order without input from other sources. the end result was to elevate the standing of RPH's to be closer to doctors as a source of knowledge with less manual labor for the individuals. But the the problem is managed care is bringing the rx margins down so to keep expenses in line most RPH's can't have the luxury of just checking profiles, medications and correct filling of the rx. Most Rx rooms in nat'l chains are probably in the 24% g/p range if they still have approx 65 3rd party 35 cash sales range. less G/p if higher 3rd party.
Whenever they fill a prescription, they make a note of whether the patient accepted counseling. Based on sneaking peaks at the list, I think the Feds have required pharmacies to do something that no one wants in the first place.
I agree with the guy who says the profits are in the front of the store. What I like about the newer Walgreen's stores I've seen are that they are free-standing. Since they sell a lot of the same stuff that the grocery does, why have the drugstore right next to a supermarket? If you think of the last ten times you stepped foot in a drug store, how many times did you have a prescription filled?
I think they should position themselves as a between-the-convenience-store-and-the-supermarket alternative.