Common crisis scenarios happen every day in pharmacies.  Ensuring there’s a recovery plan in place that reflects your business needs is the key to minimizing risks to your pharmacy’s day-to-day operations. Read about four everyday scenarios that can easily be prevented.


How to manage an internet outage with little to no interruption

Pharmacy technicians are processing compliance packaging batches for the week. Claim adjudication becomes agonizingly slow and claims begin to fail. There are now a large number of failed claims to resubmit. To make matters worse, the wait time for walk-in patients has doubled due to the slow claim adjudication. It turns out there is an internet service outage, and pharmacy claims have defaulted to dial-up adjudication. With the internet out, pharmacy team members also can’t access key patient care resources, and risk missing the daily order cut-off time.


Bell Fibe internet service strengthened by wireless LTE Internet backup, providing fast, reliable uptime. In the event of an internet service outage, connectivity automatically switches to Bell’s LTE cellular network. Most importantly, pharmacy claims and debit/credit transactions continue processing smoothly, with no impact to your business. It’s business as usual!


How to avoid lost opportunities

It’s Saturday afternoon. The store is busy and there is a steady line of customers at the checkout; a perfect day for any retail business owner, until debit and credit transactions start to fail. Since you can only accept cash, customers aren’t buying and are leaving the store in frustration. An excellent business day has turned into a disaster. The internet is up and fully functional, so why are the transactions failing? The culprits are employees streaming movies on their lunch break, taking up all the bandwidth. That same bandwidth is required for debit/credit claims. As soon as they shut down the streaming, debit/credit is back up and running. But how many sales did you lose in the meantime? How many of those customers will not return to your store?


A Cisco Meraki MX68CW router allows you to manage how internet bandwidth is allocated within your network, ensuring maximum uptime for your business systems. A percentage of bandwidth can be allocated for public Wi-Fi and employee devices, allowing employees to access Wi-Fi without impacting business continuity.


How to manage cybersecurity

It’s first thing Monday morning – one of the busiest days of the week for any pharmacy. Instead of starting the week on a positive note, you have received an irate telephone call from a parent of one of your teenage part-time employees. It seems the employee witnessed the weekend relief pharmacist surfing inappropriately explicit websites on a dispensary computer. As the owner/operator, you now have a number of potential issues on your hands: workplace harassment, labour board complaints, employee discipline, uncomfortable conversations with the impacted employees, appeasing the parents, addressing the overall situation with your entire workforce and the possibility that viruses or malware are now infecting your business systems. Your week will be consumed with putting out this fire.


Avoid this situation altogether. The Cisco Meraki MX68CW router uses content filtering to block access to undesired content, preventing anyone from browsing questionable websites. In addition to protecting critical business systems from potential cyber attack, this proactive approach to cybersecurity also minimizes exposure to risk and liability when it comes to complying with labour and workplace safety regulations.


Crisis overload

You’ve received a panicked phone call from the Store Manager. The internet browser on every computer displays an ominous message indicating that files have been encrypted until you pay a fine, or else they will be destroyed. Your business systems have been attacked by ransomware and are unusable. Do you pay the ransom, or have the systems restored from backups? Neither solution is ideal and there is a risk of lost data even if the ransom is paid, but business is at a standstill until this is resolved; no front shop sales can be processed, and no prescriptions dispensed. It can take days to restore and there’s still a possibility of lost data. How did this happen? The manager innocently clicked on a link in a suspicious email, unleashing the attack.


With unparalleled security capabilities and features to protect your business systems before, during and after an attack, cybersecurity (powered by a Cisco Meraki MX68CW router) scans data that is being downloaded from the internet, blocking and containing ransomware. Realtime detection discovers and enforces against intrusions, preventing damage from occurring. Cybersecurity is standing guard to ensure this scenario can’t happen to you.

Having a business continuity plan that includes internet backup and cybersecurity really goes a long way to reducing your downtime. discover more about business continuity and find the solutions that best support your disaster and recovery plan.



A part-time job at an Independent Pharmacy led to a 30+ year career in Pharmacy. Over the years, she has played key Product Management leadership roles in collaborating with retail pharmacy teams to design and develop both Nexxsys and PharmaClik Rx, the predecessors of Propel Rx. Sheri-Lyn currently oversees marketing for McKesson Canada's Technology Solutions division and believes that understanding the day-to-day challenges of Pharmacy puts PTS in a position to bring you the solutions you need to run your business.