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Pharmacy and Prescription Drugs

Pharmacy services are especially important in rural communities. Rural areas tend to have an older population with more chronic illnesses, with a greater need for advice from a pharmacist on managing medications. Despite this demand for services, rural pharmacies face many challenges to stay open, including financial pressures and a lack of pharmacists to provide services. Rural residents may also be unable to get transportation to the nearest pharmacy.

While the growth of Internet and mail-order pharmacies might suggest that geographical limits to access are no longer a concern, many rural residents do not have the equipment, technical skills, and/or telecommunications accessibility that these services require. As such, rural pharmacies and pharmacists will continue to fill an important and much-needed role in the health of rural people.

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Last Reviewed: 12/2/2013

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Funding for this project was supported by Grant Number U56RH05539 from the Office of Rural Health Policy, Health Resources and Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents of this website are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the funder.