New pharmacy to come in Wyckham House
by Devin Ayotte
Starting soon, Mount Royal University students won’t have to leave campus to fill up their prescriptions.After spending several years working in pharmacies across the province, University of Alberta graduate Thomas Yeung has finally reached an agreement to open his own pharmacy in the basement of Wyckham House.
“There’s a lot of opportunity here,” Yeung said of the Mount Royal campus. “Mount Royal has always been my number-one choice, in terms of what I sought out for opening up a pharmacy.”
The Students’ Association building has previously housed services such as hairdressing and banking, but it’s now visited more often for its food court and convenience store, rather than the services it provides.
However, the addition of a pharmacy could make existing services more convenient for students. For instance, Yeung plans to offer direct prescription billing to the SAMRU Student Health & Dental insurance plan – a plus for students making use of the medical clinic at the Encana Wellness Centre.
Despite his current enthusiasm, Yeung said closing the deal was a lengthy process. “I wasn’t going to jump into anything that wasn’t right for me and the Students’ Association wasn’t going to let me be here if I wasn’t the right fit,” Yeung said.
And with competing pharmacies as close as 37th Street S.W., Yeung said he is counting on the bulk of his business coming from the student body.
“I could see it being useful for people who go to the doctor at Health Services,” said English student Michael Hanson.
Wendellin Fraser, dean of Mount Royal’s Bissett School of Business recalled a time when the campus boasted many more services. “Certainly, the pharmacy would support the Encana Health and Wellness Centre that we have here and that would be good for the institution.” Fraser said.
The pharmacy is expected to open on Jan. 24 with a grand opening being held on Jan. 31. Full pharmacy services will be available, although Yeung added that “troublesome medications” prone to abuse or theft, will be carried on an as-needed -basis.