HomeNewsArticle Display

Team Fairchild Pharmacy adapts, overcomes COVID-19 challenges

Staff Sgt. Sean Rourke (pictured left), 92nd Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, demonstrates a ‘hands-off’ approach for pharmacy technicians to verify a beneficiaries military identification card, May 29, 2020, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. This verification technique, amongst other safety precautions, was put in place to aid in preventing the potential spread of the 2019 Coronavirus to keep pharmacy staff and patients safe. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nick J. Daniello)

Staff Sgt. Sean Rourke (pictured left), 92nd Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, demonstrates a ‘hands-off’ approach for pharmacy technicians to verify a beneficiaries military identification card, May 29, 2020, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. This verification technique, amongst other safety precautions, was put in place to aid in preventing the potential spread of the 2019 Coronavirus to keep pharmacy staff and patients safe. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nick J. Daniello)

Ashley Tinsley, 92nd Medical Support Squadron certified pharmacy technician, pours medication into a medication counting machine, May 29, 2020, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Multiple precautions are taken to ensure patients receive the correct amount of medication in the safest way possible, with pharmacy technicians keeping an accurate medication count during and after each step of their processes. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nick J. Daniello)

Ashley Tinsley, 92nd Medical Support Squadron certified pharmacy technician, pours medication into a medication counting machine, May 29, 2020, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Multiple precautions are taken to ensure patients receive the correct amount of medication in the safest way possible, with pharmacy technicians keeping an accurate medication count during and after each step of their processes. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nick J. Daniello)

Capt. David Kim, 92nd Medical Support Squadron chief of pharmacy operations, pours medication into a medication counting machine, May 29, 2020, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Even after initial dispensing of medications, a new medication count is conducted to ensure accuracy across all stages of the pharmacy processes before giving patients their prescriptions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nick J. Daniello)

Capt. David Kim, 92nd Medical Support Squadron chief of pharmacy operations, pours medication into a medication counting machine, May 29, 2020, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Even after initial dispensing of medications, a new medication count is conducted to ensure accuracy across all stages of the pharmacy processes before giving patients their prescriptions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nick J. Daniello)

FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. --

The 2019 Coronavirus has affected various aspects of Team Fairchild’s medical beneficiary’s services, however this has not stopped the 92nd Medical Group pharmacy from providing its patients their benefits in the safest way possible through the utilization of the Satellite Pharmacy.

 

“The push for the Satellite Pharmacy was and still is in an effort to minimize potential contact among our clinic staff members [and beneficiaries],” said Maj. Heather Kincaide, 92nd Medical Support Squadron pharmacy flight commander. “But, with help from leadership, the man-power team, and others, we were able to develop a more streamlined approach to having our beneficiaries primarily use the BX. This enabled us to provide full prescription benefits while maximizing the safety of our clinic health-care workers.”

 

The limited workers and hours of the Pharmacy and Satellite Pharmacy are in an effort to maintain physical distancing among not only Airmen and team members, but also beneficiaries to help flatten the curve of COVID-19.

 

“We have one team working [in-person] one week, than another team comes in and works the next week. This is being done to ‘preserve the fighting force.’ If one team were to have a staff member become sick with COVID, that would throw that entire team into quarantine,” Kincaide continued.

 

With this system in place it allows the Pharmacy team to maximize beneficiaries’ entitlements with minimal disruptions so the team can focus on the care given to both retirees and the mission itself.

 

“Every single person is extremely valuable and we couldn’t do what we do without everyone’s contribution. All members have been actively engaged and excited to be able to still be here and be a part of the mission and take care of our community,” Kincaide said. “In addition to our rock star team, we wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without the amazing support which we’ve had from our patients, our leadership, other clinics in the facility, and the disaster [response] teams.”

 

Although pharmacy hours are limited, most pharmacy staff are in work by 6:30 a.m. preparing for the windows to open at 7:30 a.m. and while the pharmacy windows are closed, the team is still answering phones, activating prescriptions, consulting with provider offices, and conducting prescription transfers amongst other duties.

 

“Throughout COVID this team didn’t waiver a bit and during ‘peak’ operational times even the Squadron Commander would come down to aid us during various times and hours,” said Scott Sprenger, 92nd MDSS staff pharmacist, who is has served in the Air Force for 28 years and is former Air Force Surgeon General Consultant. The inter-compartmental cooperation is fantastic as our mission is to provide the pharmacy benefit in the safest way possible.”

 

Although COVID-19 has created multiple changes to daily life, the Team Fairchild pharmacy remains ready to provide the best care possible to its military beneficiaries.

 

For more information regarding activating your prescription over the phone, or for generalized prescription medicine related questions, contact the pharmacy at (509) 247-3032.