Compliant Pharmacy Alliance, NCPA team up to advance independent pharmacy interests

STOUGHTON, Wis. Propelled by the maxim that in numbers there is strength, the nation’s top independent pharmacy organization and a 600-strong group of pharmacies unveiled a new collaboration to boost advocacy efforts and patient care.

The new partnership was announced Monday by the Compliant Pharmacy Alliance Cooperative and the National Community Pharmacists Association. The goal, both groups said, is “to better advocate for community pharmacists and their patients.”

The NCPA is the leading advocacy organization for more than 22,700 independent community pharmacies, pharmacy franchises and chains. The CPA is comprised of six individual purchasing organizations that collectively provide additional buying clout to more than 700 family-owned and privately held pharmacies.

Under their newly expanded partnership, CPA and NCPA hope to generate new NCPA members and continue the CPA's substantial support for such programs as NCPA's Legislative Defense Fund, both groups asserted. “This, in turn, would allow NCPA to implement more effective advocacy programs to better support community pharmacies,” they noted in a joint statement.

One example of the new alliance: CPA members who are NCPA members and already contributing to NCPA’s defense fund also will be urged to contribute to its political action committee. "NCPA's strong voice is a critical component enabling independent pharmacists to continue to be recognized and valued for their contributions to our healthcare system,” said Ed Heckman, CPA's CEO and general manager. “Every CPA member takes pride in managing patients and medications; a strong national voice assures the sanctity of those relationships.”

NCPA president Joseph Harmison praised CPA for its “significant support of NCPA's activities on behalf of community pharmacy. Local pharmacists face unprecedented challenges, such as declining reimbursement, pharmacy benefit manager abuses, mandatory mail-order policies and restricted patient choice,” Harmison added. “Working together, our combined efforts will give independent pharmacists and their patients a stronger voice to address these and other issues and achieve a more level pharmacy playing field.”