Family Health Pharmacy celebrates 20th anniversary

By Tammy Watts

DailyAdvocate.com

GREENVILLE — Family Health Pharmacy, a 340B non-profit, located within Family Health Services of Darke County, celebrated 20 years in Greenville on Friday, May 27.

The federal 340B program was established in 1992 through bipartisan legislation, and requires pharmaceutical companies to provide drugs at a discounted price to non-profit healthcare centers. Family Health Services, in turn, uses all savings resulting from its participation in the pricing program, to expand patients’ ability to access medication, regardless of ability to pay.

Several state representatives were in attendance, as well as Darke County Commissioners Larry Holmes and Mike Stegall. The commissioners presented Family Health with a proclamation in honor of its 20-year celebration, recognizing its service to the community.

Rep. Scott Lipps (OH-62), Health Committee Chair, explained, “I am the leader of 340B legislation. We had a strong 340B pharmacy in my community when I was mayor, so I have made protecting it a priority, and there is a growing group of legislators that understand it.”

Kelly Carey, of the State Association for Health Centers, lobbies and educates legislators on the importance of 340B. She contacted Lipps when a vote was needed on SB263, to bolster the 340B program in Ohio. The bill was passed shortly thereafter, and took effect in April 2021.

Rep. Susan Manchester (OH-84), sponsored the Ohio House version of SB263. “Seeing the success of Family Health here in Greenville, motivated me to support it,” she stated.

Janell Claudy began the pharmacy in 2002, after learning that as a federally qualified health center, Family Health was eligible for the 340B pricing program. “I was a part-time pharmacist, and had no experience in management,” she recalled. However, after traveling to Washington, D.C., she learned how to develop the pharmacy, so local patients could start benefiting from the program. “Everything fell into place. And the best thing about it, is that we see the savings stay right here, and help the community; we never have to wonder where the money is going.”

Jared Pollick, who became the executive director of Family Health in March 2020, admitted the timing was challenging. “Still, it was better than sitting on the sidelines,” he stated, adding that everyone pulled together to maintain a high service level, and kept patients safe throughout the past two years. “I’m just thrilled to be a part of it.”

A sizeable crowd braved the damp weather to enjoy Badger BBQ and Creme de la Creme Cakery food trucks, caricatures by Paul Ackley, free goodie bags, and a raffle. It was all Family Health’s way of thanking the community, employees, and state and local representatives, for their support over the last 20 years.

Contact Daily Advocate Reporter Tammy Watts at [email protected]