Category Archives: Tom Kelly

Reduce your Prescription Costs through Exercise!

Of course be sure to get your physician’s approval before beginning any exercise program.

Start slow, and gradually increase a little at a time. Begin by briskly walking one block a day, increase by a block every three or four days. Before you know it, you will be walking a few miles a day and regaining your health. If your legs, hips, or back prevents you from walking, try exercising in water. Water will take the weight of your legs, hips, and back. If you don’t have access to a pool try the lakes or bay.  Be sure to drink plenty of water, even for swimming unless you physician restricts your water intake.

Tom Kelly, R.Ph., B.Sc.

Tom Kelly attended Temple University School of Pharmacy and graduated with the class of 1980.  Upon graduation Mr. Kelly worked for Pathmark Stores and was Executive Vice President of the United Pharmacists Guide UFCW Local 100R.  Tom and his wife Samantha then opened their first retail pharmacy in 1997 in Lacey Township, NJ.  Since then Tom and Samantha opened and are partners in three additional retail pharmacies.  Tom is a member in good standing in the following organizations involved in both retail pharmacy and substance abuse deterrence: National Community Pharmacists Association, Garden State Pharmacy Owners Association, Compliant Pharmacy Alliance (10 years), Lacey Municipal Alliance Work Group, Lacey Elks lodge 2518, and the DART Coalition.  Mr. Kelly is also a founding partner of the Patient Physician Trust Partnership (PPTP.net), a tool designed to promote the use of controlled medications in a safe and responsible manner while deterring misuse, abuse, and diversion. Tom recently honored to present at the National Rx Drug Abuse Summit in April 2014, and the New England Division of the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators in October 2014

 

tom kelly

Who are We?

I recently had the chance to sit down with Tom Kelly, owner of Medicine to Go in Forked River.

Good Afternoon Tom, How did you and your wife get introduced to the Pharmaceutical business?

My wife Samantha and I are third generation pharmacists. Samantha’s grandfather, Joseph Damiano, established Damiano’s Pharmacy in 1933 in the middle of the Great Depression. His pharmacy is still thriving in Clifton, NJ under the leadership of his son (our uncle) John Damiano and granddaughter Dr. Sara Damiano. Samantha worked at Damiano’s Pharmacy while attending  Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science, which ultimately provided the inspiration for us to open our first store. A family history living on.

When did you open Medicine to Go?

We opened Medicine To Go Pharmacies in 1997 as a Medicine Shoppe franchise store. By mutual agreement we left the franchise in 2005 and changed our name to Medicine To Go Pharmacies. While I worked in Lacey, Samantha worked at Kapler’s Pharmacy of Beach Haven in order to support our family.  She fell in love with Kapler’s and subsequently purchased the store from friend and partner David DeCarlo in 2003.

Do you have any other pharmacies in Ocean County?

In 2005 we heard of a pharmacy closing in Lakewood and contacted David DeCarlo and David Healy. We formed a partnership and promptly signed the lease and opened Medicine To Go Pharmacies of Lakewood.

How were you able to help after the fire in 2007?

In May of 2007 during the Warren Grove Gunnery Range fire, which blackened 14,000 acres and displaced 6,000   residents Tom Kelly provided emergency prescription medication at no charge to evacuees at the Southern Regional High School.

How were you able to assist during Super Storm Sandy?

2012 brought a particularly challenging year. Ocean County took a direct hit from Super Storm Sandy.  Kapler’s Pharmacy sustained catastrophic damage. In spite of the storm, Kapler’s never stopped servicing fellow storm victims. Once again the Kelly’s provided much needed medications to the victims and the first responders at no charge. No one went without their medicine. A fact that the Kelly’s are very proud of. We temporarily relocated Kapler’s Pharmacy to a second floor apartment above Kapler’s, then to Medicine To Go of Lacey, then to the   Regenerate Store in Beach Haven before finally moving back to the original location in May 2013.

I see that part of Kapler’s move to Manahawkin, what specialties does this pharmacy offer?

During the Aftermath of Sandy we relocated the Compounding Division of Kapler’s Medicine Solutions to Manahawkin to help ensure that the patients who had to    relocate did not have to find a new pharmacy to trust with their needs. The Compounding Division services all of our locations and is just another way we can ensure our patients get the medications they need in the best manner for them.

Tell me a little bit about Hot or Not Yoga Studio.

Samantha Kelly opened Hot or Not Yoda Studio in May of 2012 with the intention of assisting her patients get healthier and reducing their need for medications. Additionally the yoga studio served as an emergency shower and laundry site for Long Beach Island’s first responders, and a collection site for needed food and clothing for the victims of the storm. The studio gives back to the community by providing classes at no charge where students can donate funds or goods to many various local non-profit organizations.

How is it that in spite of the intense competition due to nine other pharmacies opening in our marketing area Medicine To Go not only survives but thrives and continues to grow?

Fundamentally our success starts during at hiring. We hire staff that understands our patient philosophy, who demonstrate dedication to the idea of being true neighbors to our patients, and who are patient advocates.

Does the pharmacy make you wait more that 15-20 minutes when you or a loved one is feeling ill or uncomfortable?

Absolutely not, we completely understand when you have a loved one who is feeling ill or uncomfortable. Working to fill your medication quickly so you can get home to rest, relax and feel better is very important to us.

Do you get a sense that the staff genuinely care about you and your health?

Family is the core how we work, it’s how we came about, and what makes us continue to thrive.  We treat our staff like family.  We treat our patients like family.  We focus on retaining staff whose prime objectives above all else is caring for patients.  Our team embraces each patient interaction as if they represent the patient, not the pharmacy.  They take ownership of each patient’s challenge and work toward a successful outcomes.  Not representing Medicine to Go, but the patient as if they were the patient’s son, brother, sister or mother.

 

Thank you Tom for taking the time for this interview.

 

Medicine to Go

528 W. Lacey Road

Forked River, NJ 08731

609.242.1400

www.medicinetogo.net

 

Medicine To Go will Assist you In Moving from Your Pharmacy to Ours!

Tom Kelly, R.Ph., B.Sc., Medicine To Go Pharmacies

So you call you pharmacy for a refill and you hear a strange recording. You ask yourself, did I dial the right number?  It can be downright disorienting to find your favorite trusted pharmacy no longer in the pharmacy business. So what do you do?

If you like the new pharmacy where the records were transferred to give the personnel at new store a few extra days to process your prescriptions. The transfer of records into a new pharmacy computer system is an art and is rarely perfect. The staff will be answering many questions, both in person and over the telephones. If you don’t get you questions answered at your first attempt please be patient, given time the new pharmacy will certainly be able to sort out your concerns and get you your needed medications.

In the event you do not desire to use the new pharmacy who purchased your old pharmacy records visit the other pharmacies in town and interview the staff. Do the technicians have the time to answer your questions? Is the pharmacist friendly and easily accessible? Are all the personnel “Certified Pharmacy Technicians” (CPhT)? Certified technicians have passed an examination indicating they have the basic skills necessary to assist a registered pharmacist.  Are they also registered with the State of New Jersey as “Registered Pharmacy Technicians” (RPhT)? Registered Pharmacy Technicians are subject to background checks and vetted by the State. Does the pharmacy have convenient parking and is the pharmacy department located close to the parking? Does the pharmacy offer free local delivery in case you fall ill or have a loved one who needs all your attention? When you call are you left on hold for long periods of time? Does the pharmacy offer outbound telephone calls, text messages, or emails when your prescriptions are ready for pickup? Do they have an easy to use website? Does the pharmacy accept your insurance? If you do not have insurance do they have a low price guarantee?  These simple questions can help you choose the pharmacy which will best fit your needs.

After you select your next pharmacy what can you do to make the transition to your new pharmacy easier? The new pharmacy will need some basic information. Providing your name, date of birth, address, home phone, cell number, insurance cards, Medicare cards, a list of your allergies (and what happened), your medical history, and your preference for easy open or child proof caps will go a long way in assisting your new pharmacy. Your new pharmacy can also easily transfer your prescriptions from the store who purchased your records, or if you have new prescriptions simply bring them in on your first visit.

Regardless of which pharmacy you choose, you can rest assured that your new pharmacy has highly qualified personnel who will be up to the task of providing you exceptional pharmaceutical care and assist you in easing any and all your concerns.

Best of health to you!

tom kelly

Tom Kelly, R.Ph., B.Sc.

Tom Kelly attended Temple University School of Pharmacy and graduated with the class of 1980.  Upon graduation Mr. Kelly worked for Pathmark Stores and was Executive Vice President of the United Pharmacists Guide UFCW Local 100R.  Tom and his wife Samantha then opened their first retail pharmacy in 1997 in Lacey Township, NJ.  Since then Tom and Samantha opened and are partners in three additional retail pharmacies.  Tom is a member in good standing in the following organizations involved in both retail pharmacy and substance abuse deterrence: National Community Pharmacists Association, Garden State Pharmacy Owners Association, Compliant Pharmacy Alliance (10 years), Lacey Municipal Alliance Work Group, Lacey Elks lodge 2518, and the DART Coalition.  Mr. Kelly is also a founding partner of the Patient Physician Trust Partnership (PPTP.net), a tool designed to promote the use of controlled medications in a safe and responsible manner while deterring misuse, abuse, and diversion. Tom recently honored to present at the National Rx Drug Abuse Summit in April 2014, and the New England Division of the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators in October 2014

 

Thanks for Eating Poorly, and Putting My Kids Through College!

Last week Jennifer Grazioso asked me if I would like to write a monthly column for the Gazette. My patients and my staff would tell you a resounding yes. My first love is speaking with and assisting our patients. Hopefully this will be the first of many articles in the Forked River Gazette. Thank you Jen.

Not a day passes in our practice that I don’t hear “I can’t afford this medication, can you talk to my doctor about something cheaper?” Working with the physician we are frequently able to help our patient with a financially viable alternative medication. That said, the better question would have been: “How do I get off these medications and stop being sick?” We all know the answer is life style changes, particularly diet and exercise. I’ve often said, if the folks of Lacey ate healthy we would not need five pharmacies, only one or at most two.

For the sake of simplicity and so this article isn’t five pages long let’s focus on food. Eating healthier will improve weight, cholesterol, diabetes, ADHD, arthritis, fibromyalgia, osteoporosis, hypertension, heart disease, cancer, mental health, etc., etc., etc. There is no chronic health condition which I know of that would not benefit from a healthier diet. Better yet, eating correctly will reduce the chance of us getting sick in the first place!

So how do we change our poor eating habits? It is not as difficult as it may seem. By taking small steps in diet we can gradually ease our way to getting healthier and reduce our need for prescription medications. Gradual is the key, frequently we dive in head first to making big changes only to be frustrated after a week and quitting our well-intended goals.

Begin by just correcting one meal. Try buying, preparing, and eating just one healthy meal a day. Whether it is breakfast, lunch, or dinner does not matter, just practice eating one of those meals only using healthy foods. What is healthy? Foods without labels, whole foods, nothing which comes in a box, or can.  Get accustomed to buying and eating these healthy foods. After a month or two add a second healthy meal a day.  And after another month or two add your last healthy meal. Using this strategy you and your family will gently adjust to eating much healthier. Make the change for the whole family. Trust me, a picky eater will eventually eat healthy food if that is the only option.

You only have to remember a couple of basic guidelines. First, no portions of meat larger then the palm of your hand. Second, one serving of fruit for every five servings of vegetables. Fruit is a wonderful food, but do not go overboard. When possible purchase organic, locally sourced, non-GMO produce. It may be a little more expensive, but it will certainly taste far better. When I eat non-organic foods I find it tastes like cardboard.

Of course you should review changes in diet and exercise with your doctor first.

Best of health to you!

Tom

tom kellyTom Kelly, R.Ph., B.Sc.

Tom Kelly attended Temple University School of Pharmacy and graduated with the class of 1980.  Upon graduation Mr. Kelly worked for Pathmark Stores and was Executive Vice President of the United Pharmacists Guide UFCW Local 100R.  Tom and his wife Samantha then opened their first retail pharmacy in 1997 in Lacey Township, NJ.  Since then Tom and Samantha opened and are partners in three additional retail pharmacies.  Tom is a member in good standing in the following organizations involved in both retail pharmacy and substance abuse deterrence: National Community Pharmacists Association, Garden State Pharmacy Owners Association, Compliant Pharmacy Alliance (10 years), Lacey Municipal Alliance Work Group, Lacey Elks lodge 2518, and the DART Coalition.  Mr. Kelly is also a founding partner of the Patient Physician Trust Partnership (PPTP.net), a tool designed to promote the use of controlled medications in a safe and responsible manner while deterring misuse, abuse, and diversion. Tom recently honored to present at the National Rx Drug Abuse Summit in April 2014, and the New England Division of the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators in October 2014