NEWS | May 11, 2011

Increased security measures force change to NHCC drive-thru pharmacy

By Naval Health Clinic Charleston Public Affairs

Due to increased security as a result of the current force protection condition, vehicles are being restricted from parking and driving within a certain distance of any government building on Joint Base Charleston. This restriction includes the Naval Health Clinic Charleston and has forced a change in the procedures for patients who desire to utilize the NHCC drive-thru pharmacy window.

As of May 9, a pharmacy technician has been posted at the entrance of the NHCC pharmacy drive-thru lane during business hours and greets customers and calls in their orders. The pharmacy tech uses use a government issued cell phone allowing for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliance and to ensure patient privacy.

After giving the pharmacy technician their prescription, the customer drives to a newly designated "pharmacy refill drive-through only" parking spot near the front entrance of the facility. At this point, customers can either walk inside to a drive-thru dedicated refill window to pick-up their prepared medications with minimal wait time, or for those needing additional assistance, a NHCC staff member will bring the medication directly to their vehicle.

The intention of this plan is to keep drive-through services running while staying compliant with the newly imposed security measures.

"The NHCC staff is trying to make the best of this situation," said Jeff Kelley, NHCC public affairs officer. "It is not perfect, but it is better than hanging a closed sign on the drive-thru window and making everyone come inside.

"Maintaining the highest standards of patient and family centered care is at the heart of what the staff at NHCC strives for everyday. We thank the community for their patience and understanding during this upgrade in our force protection status."