The Pharmaceutical Industry By the Numbers


Pharmacy point of sale system

It’s common to hear about the pharmaceutical industry in the news these days — usually it’s about something negative that a drug manufacturer did or didn’t do, or it’s about how a sketchy doctor abused the system. But it’s easy to forget that Americans depend heavily on this industry, and at the backbone of the entire system, the small town pharmacy and drug store is holding it all together. Don’t believe us?

48.5%: The percentage of Americans who have used at least one prescription drug within the past 30 days, at nearly any given time.

2.6 billion: The amount of prescription drugs in one year that American patients picked up from pharmacies, or received at a medical facility, after going to a doctor for medical treatment.

$75 billion: The estimated amount of money that’s made each year on the sale of illegal or counterfeited prescription drugs, according to the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest.

$3.2 billion: The estimated amount of money that the POS system industry is worth, on a global scale, according to 2014 data.

So how do all of these numbers work together, and why do they matter?

It’s clear that Americans consume a large part of the world’s prescription drugs — for better or worse, the country consumes a higher percentage of prescription drugs than nearly every other country in the world. The problem is, when the pharmaceutical industry isn’t able to regulate so many drugs, it leads to increased illegal drug sales and questionable online pharmacies that sell unapproved medications.

But small pharmacies can play an important role in helping to regulate and stabilize this industry, simply by using the new technologies and security systems that are available. A retail pharmacy POS system, for example, is capable of handling very specialized tasks that are only performed by pharmacies; regular retail POS systems just can’t handle those tasks, because other stores don’t need those functions. In other words, a pharmacy operating without a specialized POS system is one that’s probably falling behind.

But now we’re turning the conversation over to you — do you think new technology, like POS systems, are as important as it seems? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section! Research more here.

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