The building on Duncan Road which housed Pocahontas Pharmacy for decades, once again opened its doors to the public Thursday as Pocahontas Memorial Hospital Pharmacy. In addition to filling prescriptions and answering questions concerning medications, the pharmacy also has a gift shop and coffee shop.
The pharmacy has a familiar layout with the gift shop in front and the prescription counter to the back. The new coffee shop is located to the right of the counter and offers a menu of teas, coffees and baked goods.
Behind the prescription counter, and eager to serve the community, are Pharmacists Amy Kelley and Quin Hatfield.
“Actually, I went to school for biology and got my degree in biology at Alderson Broaddus,” Hatfield said. “I knew I wanted to work in healthcare, but I didn’t know how I could do that. It really interested me as to how different medications affect the body and how I can help people and still work in the community and interact with people, which is really big for me.
“I love community,” she continued. “I love learning about people. I love meeting new people, so it was just a perfect fit for me.”
Hatfield is originally from Moorefield, but moved to Pocahontas County with her husband, Anson, who is from the county.
Kelley has been a pharmacist in the county for years and is very familiar with the counter at this particular pharmacy. She is a county native and began her foray in pharmacy studies as a senior at Pocahontas County High School.
“I actually interned under Jim Burks in the original Pocahontas Pharmacy here, so I actually did some hours with him my senior year of high school,” she said. “I have had a love of healthcare, and I love the math and science that it requires.”
Both pharmacists have gone through a rigorous educational process in order to become well-versed in their field, and they are happy to share that knowledge. They encourage customers to ask questions or express any concerns they may have about their prescriptions.
“I don’t think that the customers really realize how much goes into filling the prescription,” Kelley said. “We’re in the background checking allergies, checking against their other health conditions, checking interactions with their other medications. There are a lot of steps in the process.
“You might not know we’re doing all that, but we are a hundred percent paying attention to everything that’s going on,” she added.
Hatfield added that pharmacists are able to make recommendations to customers who are not seeing results with their medication.
“We are medication experts, so we can recommend – if something is not working for you – we can reach out to your provider [on your behalf],” she said. “I feel like that’s a big thing we can do. It’s not necessarily that we’re prescribing it or we’re diagnosing anything. It’s just us saying if this isn’t working, here’s another option.”
When PMH announced in April that it would be opening a pharmacy for the public, Kelley was part of the planning committee and said the main focus was on customer service.
“When we sat down and did the planning for this pharmacy, our main focus was the customers,” she said. “We wanted to be completely user friendly. That’s our main goal, to help people. If they need me to call a doctor, I can call a doctor. If they need me to call insurance, I can do that.
“We’re going to try to go above and beyond for that customer service,” she added.
The PMH Pharmacy is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, call 304-799-1077.