A compounding pharmacy is a place that creates custom medications for patients. They are usually used when the patient's specific needs cannot be met by an off-the-shelf medication or to avoid certain inactive ingredients such as sugar or preservatives. Compounding pharmacies use raw materials and mix them with other components to create medicines tailored specifically for each person's need.
This blog post will discuss what compounding pharmacies do and how they benefit patients with unique medicine. This article talks about the benefits of these specialized drug-makers, who combine different medications in order to create a treatment plan for each individual that is tailored specifically just to them, whether it be pain management, hormone replacement, and more.
What is a Compounding Pharmacy?
So you are here asking yourself, what is a compounding pharmacy? Basically, a compounding pharmacy is a particular type of drugstore, unlike CVS or Walgreens. These pharmacies are regulated by state boards, and they mix their own ingredients to create unique medications for patients with specific needs. Compounding pharmacies offer a wide range of services and treatments, such as:
- Formulations to treat children or infants
- Treatments for various diseases that affect your skin, eyes, ears, etc.
- Alternative methods of receiving medications (for example, sublingual tablets)
- Works with your physician to suit your prescription specifically for you
In most cases, your physician will partner with a compounding pharmacy to create the best medication to meet your individual needs. These medications are customized for you and are compounded in small batches or individually, depending on what is needed. We work with your physician and yourself to suit your individual needs to provide the best results for your medication.
This is an excellent way for physicians to prescribe medications. This method will ensure that you are receiving the most accurate medication, concentration, and dosage that your body needs to heal or manage specific conditions. In some cases, this can be more cost-effective since it eliminates unnecessary ingredients from the medication composition. We also have access to many different types of alternative delivery methods, such as sublingual tablets, which dissolve under the tongue rather than having to swallow them whole. These do not taste bad at all!
Compounding pharmacies are a great choice because you will receive a customized prescription specifically made just for you! Compounded medications have been around since ancient times, but there were no formal rules established until 2004. The FDA has continued to regulate compounding pharmacies over time, so they meet specific safety and quality assurance standards. This ensures each patient receives safe, effective treatment when receiving compounded prescriptions from their pharmacy partner. Bayview Pharmacy undergoes rigorous testing and standard operating procedures and is an approved online compounding pharmacy verified by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. We are a multi-state licensed 503A compounding pharmacy possessing both sterile and non-sterile laboratories for your medication preparations.
There are many benefits of using a compounding pharmacy, such as personalized care – the correct dose – absorption issues – special storage requirements – or if your medication is on backorder and unavailable at other retail pharmacies.
Compounding pharmacies are an excellent resource for pet owners who need custom medications. Not only can they compound medicines from scratch, but compounding pharmacists also work with veterinarians and customers alike to come up with solutions that meet individual needs! For instance: if your cat or dog cannot swallow pills, then you're in luck because the experienced staff of pharmacists will formulate a liquid version instead!
Some of the animals compounding pharmacies work with include, but are not limited to:
- And many more!
Compounding pharmacies often partner with zoos to provide medications for animals in captivity. Zoos need to be especially careful about what they give their animals for health reasons. If you are having trouble getting your pet medication they need, compounding pharmacies may help!
Non Sterile Compounding
Non-sterile compounding is the most common, and while these medicines are not prepared in an entirely sterile environment, they are made with high quality and stringent standards. The procedure ensures ingredient purity and accurate mixing, packing, and labeling.
Dosage forms include pills, liquids, gels, lotions, ointments, troches, tablets, and more.
Professional licensed pharmacy technicians use a laminar flow hood (a carefully enclosed bench to prevent contamination), HEPA filter, and full garb when making drugs to ensure the highest quality of your compounded medication.
Sterile compounding is employed when there's a high risk of infection, such as with injections, via an IV, or straight into the eyes. Sterile products like these must be carefully prepared in a separate sterile room by professional compounding pharmacists because they need to be administered in a unique way that reduces the chance of infection. Every precaution should be taken to eliminate any germs during the compounding process to ensure the well-being of the specific patient.
Ryan Dyer, RPh and Owner, is the compounding pharmacist conducting sterile compounding here at Bayview Pharmacy. With over 20 years of pharmacy compounding experience, he works with your doctor or doctors to get the medicine you need in your specific dosage form.
Our walk-in sterile laboratory undergoes rigorous 3rd party testing and cleaning every month to ensure sterility for our patients.
Who makes sure that the drugs made by compounding pharmacies are safe?
Pharmacy Compounding Accreditation Board
The independent pharmacy compounding accreditation board formally offers its seal of approval to pharmacies that voluntarily undergo strict inspections and other rigid requirements. PCAB accreditation of a compounding pharmacy can be challenging to obtain due to the rigorous standards and testing the pharmacy needs to undergo to get and keep.
Compounding accreditation board PCAB is a third-party agency and shows the pharmacy has achieved the most comprehensive compliance in the industry.
503A vs. 503B
Compounding pharmacies are overseen by each states' Board of Pharmacy, not the FDA, meaning that none of the customized medications are FDA approved. Bayview Pharmacy is a 503A registered pharmacy, referred to by the FDA as a traditional compounding pharmacy that compounds per patient-specific prescriptions and are required by the state boards of pharmacy to comply with USP and guidelines. The FDA deals mainly with 503B registered facilities and manufacturers.
How do I know if the drug I'm taking came from a doctor?
Regular pharmacies cannot fill prescriptions for uncompounded drugs. If your doctors prescribe you a compounded medication, you should fill it in a compounding pharmacy instead. If your medicines come from a doctor's office, hospital or clinic, ask whether your drugs come from any accredited manufacturer.
How many compounding pharmacies are there?
According to the American Pharmacist Association, there are approximately 56,000 community pharmacy chains nationwide, some 7,500 of which have particular expertise on advanced compounding services. Bayview Pharmacy is looking to be your go-to modern compounding pharmacy, and we are working hard at going nationwide.
Currently, we offer quality service in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, and Florida.
Below is a map of the available states we currently service. As more become available, make sure to check back for updates!
Your Modern Compounding Pharmacy
At Bayview Pharmacy, we're committed to providing personalized medication for our patients. That means that you can come in and work with one of our experienced pharmacists who will create a custom-tailored treatment plan just for your needs. With the push toward more personalized medicine and healthcare across all fields, it is no surprise that this level of care has also found its way into pharmacies like ours.
We offer everything from sterile compounding services to non-sterile ones – whatever your need or preference maybe! Contact us today at (401) 284-4505 if you want to learn more about how we can help improve your quality of life through better health management strategies such as customized medication plans made just for you.