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Medicine for the community

Profile: Mike Quick has helped local independent pharmacies provide services

Posted: October 2, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: October 2, 2011 1:55 a.m.

Mike Quick, left, national vice president of Good Neighbor Pharmacy Development and pharmacist Tony Olivier hold products at Valencia Pharmacy in Newhall.

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Mike Quick is a busier man than usual this weekend. He’s part of a team of four who joined forces to bring the Santa Clarita Jazz Festival to town for its inaugural event at the Valencia Country Club on Saturday.

“I’m pretty pleased with the people in the Santa Clarita Valley, and we wanted to bring recognition to the city,” Quick said. “This was a good way to do it and make it the first of a yearly event.”

Working with John Heys, Morris Thomas and noted saxophonist Everette Harp, Quick organized the event to spotlight the city and help support local organizations that serve the community.

What people may not know, however, is that Quick is the national vice president of development for Good Neighbor Pharmacy, created by Amerisource Bergen, an $85 billion Fortune 25 company with a distribution center based in Valencia, Quick said.

Good Neighbor Pharmacy

Amerisource Bergen is a pharmaceutical and health care related company providing services in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada.

Good Neighbor Pharmacy was the brainchild of a team Quick was a part of that lends clout to the entrepreneurial, independent pharmacies so they could compete with the chain stores.

Bergen Brunswig Drug Company, as the company was known then, was already a seller and distributor of pharmaceutical supplies.

The concept behind Good Neighbor Pharmacy allowed the company to support the independents we were serving, Quick said.

“We saw a need for them to brand and market themselves so they can compete with the chain pharmacies,” Quick said. “We service them with all their drugs and home health care, programs and solutions to help them in many ways. We’re a full-service supplier.”

Santa Clarita is home to three of the independent pharmacies Quick helped band together: Valencia Pharmacy, Valencia Town Center Pharmacy and Saugus Drugs.

“We’re very proud to have three pharmacies in Santa Clarita,” Quick said.

The network of pharmacies includes more than 3,700 independently owned pharmacies across the United States, with 325 in Southern California, he said.

Unlike the chains, Quick said, people don’t have to wait in line to get information from a pharmacist. The company sees itself as part of the overall health care team for each customer.

It relishes the name “Good Neighbor,” he said.

The pharmacies provide services vital to the community, Quick said. Like the old-fashioned pharmacies, the network can hand-mix compounds that most chains won’t make for customers in need of specially mixed medications. It provides personal service customers don’t get elsewhere, including delivering medication critical to shut-ins.

Amerisource Bergen

Amerisource Bergen is one of three large corporations that distribute most of the pharmaceutical and home health care services, Quick said. Amerisource Bergen, McKesson Pharmaceutical and Cardinal Health cover 85 to 90 percent of all of the wholesale business in this country.

Locally, institutional health care organizations Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital and Kaiser Permanente are accounts of Amerisource Bergen, Quick said.

Good Neighbor Pharmacy achieved the highest customer satisfaction ranking among chain drug stores in the J.D. Power and Associates 2011 U.S. National Pharmacy Study.

It was the second consecutive year the network ranked highest in the survey; it tied in 2011. AmerisourceBergen reported earlier in the year that it posted revenue of $19.8 billion, up 2.4 percent, for its quarter ending in March, and in July reported its fiscal third-quarter earnings rose 13 percent.

At the end of September, the company announced it had signed a deal to buy CVS Caremark Corp.’s TheraCom LLC unit for $250 million.

TheraCom provides support services to the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, which are expected to expand Amerisource Bergen’s consulting services offerings and pharmacy benefit reimbursement capabilities.

Amerisource Bergen’s stock rose to $37.65 by the close of trading on Friday.

Man of the Year

Quick was nominated as Man of the Year by Carousel Ranch for all the work he does in the community with Good Neighbor Pharmacy’s backing.

“Being nominated for Man of the Year last year was quite an honor,” Quick said.

Named Honorary Pharmacy Alumnus at the USC School of Pharmacy in 1997, Quick also received the Corporate Award for Excellence in Health Care from Western University School of Health Sciences in 2003.

A member of the board of directors of Centurion, a support group for the USC School of Pharmacy and a member of the Board of Trustees at Western University, Quick is also a corporate member of the California Pharmacists Association.

A resident of Santa Clarita since 1991, Quick and Good Neighbor Pharmacy have also supported events with Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital Foundation, Providence Holy Cross Foundation, Soroptimist International of the Americas, Carousel Ranch and more.

“We can support a number of things through Good Neighbor Pharmacies,” Quick said. “I hardly ever say ‘No.’”

A big supporter of the local Soroptimist fashion show and breast cancer awareness efforts, Quick has worked with Cheri Fleming to sponsor healthy, good things in the community he said.

“We have a home-grown attitude,” Quick said. “We’re part of the Santa Clarita Valley.”

Co-founder of the annual GNP/ICP Scholarship Golf Tournament in Santa Clarita, the event awards ten $10,000 scholarships to pharmacy students pursuing a career in the community pharmacy industry.

The ninth annual event was just held in June at the Robinson Ranch Golf Club. Begun in 2003, the annual tournament has raised some $1 million and also created an endowment of $25,000 at USC School of Pharmacy and at Western University School of Health Sciences College of Pharmacy.

Local advocate

Quick has only worked for one company for 49 years and has been a local resident for some 20 years.

The drug industry leader has devoted much of that time to supporting causes that give back to people and the community.

“I worked my way through the whole company, beginning right out of college,” Quick said.

And as if being in charge of Good Neighbor Pharmacy development, supporting local causes and staging this weekend’s Santa Clarita Jazz Festival isn’t enough, Quick also married recently.

“I love SCV,” Quick said. “I love the community.”

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