Flier misleads customers

Wednesday, March 31, 2004

BRUNSWICK, Maine - A mass mailing sent by Rite Aid recently raised the blood pressure of a local pharmacy owner.
Parkview Pharmacy, located at Parkview Adventist Hospital, assures residents it has not closed despite claims made by a recent Rite Aid mailing.

Susan Anderson, the new owner of Parkview Pharmacy, knew something was awry when she started getting phone calls from baffled customers asking why the pharmacy had closed. The question surprised Anderson, who at the time was in the midst of buying Parkview and expanding its hours, staff and services to include compounding and DME.

The source of the confusion: A flier sent to local residents by Rite Aid’s corporate headquarters that said Parkview had gone out of business.

“In this transfer of business Parkview never closed even for one day,” Anderson said, “and in this letter they specifically said that Parkview Pharmacy had closed - not is going to close or might close, but had closed.”

The mailing also included a $20 coupon toward a non-prescription item with a prescription transfers.

The pharmacy giant did have reason to believe the pharmacy closed because Rite Aid’s negotiations to buy the location had failed, according to a local newspaper. Still, Anderson and Parkview Adventist Hospital officials, the pharmacy’s former owner, called the letter bothersome.

“I think it has actually backfired on Rite Aid because we have had a lot of positive reaction from the community,” said Anderson. “The Rite Aid letter implied that they were the neighborhood pharmacy and that they were here to stay. It just ticked me off.”

Anderson, who also owns the nearby Medical Center Pharmacy at Mid Coast Hospital, said she has been in business since 1965.

Rite Aid has since sent a second letter to Brunswick and area residents acknowledging their mistake and saying the company meant to no harm.