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Tri-County News
Kimball, Minnesota
November 17, 2016     Tri-County News
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November 17, 2016

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.... ..... www.mL,* ;^" "~" " --- PAGE 3 November 17, 2016 000 to bill Medicare. It's possible that "I've worked very hard to earn Thrifty White can take this on, the trust and confidence of the although not immediately, buying public," Arenson said. The photo kiosk, where you Despite causing some confusion can print your digital photos, will and even consternation, he's still stay. And they'll always have cards working hard to do that. The com- and gifts, as long as there's an munity benefits from this deal, Arenson's store there. And the ice and from having the new Thrifty cream shop will stay. He can reas- White store in town. sess his plans after Christmas. Mark Arenson (behind the counter) will sell the pharmacy portion of Arenson's - inventory and records - to the new Thifty White store in Annandale. The new store will keep Arenson's hours and phone number, and there will be a continuity of quality care for its customers. Staff photo by Jean Doran Matua. By lean Doran Matua, Editor Two pharmacy technicians, When it was announced some two or three pharmacists, and the months ago that the Thrifty delivery person will be employed White corporation planned to at the new store too. Craig build a brand-new pharmacy in Bechtold, who has been the phar- Annandale, many were confused, macist at Arenson's for 43 years, Some were even angry. There were hasn't decided yet what he'll do. already two pharmacies in town, Everything else in the store will Keaveny and Arenson's. stay, at least through Christmas Since then, Keaveny was time. They're stocked with bought out by Thrifty White last Christmas inventory and cards, month and closed completely. So and still carry a large inventory of there would be two pharmacies in gift and convenience items. opened in the past 50 years, and he's not sure of any still left for many miles around. It's hard to keep things in stock when you're a small operation, he said. One medication for one of his patients costs $7,900. With advance notice, he can order it, but he may not get reimbursed for a month or so. "It's tough to oper- ate under these circumstances," he said. Arenson's health is another townagain, both ofthem affiliated As it turns out, this was a deal in reason he's selling the pharmacy. with ThriftyWhite. the making way back in 2011, but In 2004, he started having black- As of Dec. 6, there will only be Arenson couldn't say a thing until outs and headaches. It was a long one pharmacy in Annandale, the it was finalized just recently, time before he was diagnosed with brand-new Thrifty White on the "Thrifty White isn't out buy- a subdural hemorrhage, a brain .,._west side of town (nex~to Dollar ing pharmacies, they're buy,bleed. He was outT of the phar- ! ~(~eladr~/l; ~afld fict0ss'/-Iigtiway55 ing Thrifty White pharmacies, macy for four or"'five .... year;r:; t~,~,~reco~..,~,.~ : :[from McDonald s). Arenson said. He said he's had ering. "I was wiped out, physically : -'[:: Owner Mark Arenson hasoffers to buy just the records, but and menta!ly, said Arenson who : ilannounced that the pharmacy then there would be no pharma- is now 57. ' I just don't have it any ]portion of Arenson's Annandale cies in town. He held out for a deal more." iPharmacy will be sold Dec. 6 to that better served the community. As for the future beyond ]Thrifty White. Pharmiacy inven- Arensons was started in 1971Christmas, that's up in the air. ]tory and recordg will be at the new by George and Maureen Arenson. Arenson is open to options for ]store first thing Dec. Z Mark bought it in 1990 from his use of the space, either adding '~ Letters will soon go out to all pharmacist father who retired other stores to part of the space, regular customers at Arenson'saround 2000. "He was bypassed by iexplaining the changes, and that '.Thrifty White will have their records and that there will be continuity of care. With about 90 istores, Thrifty White as a corpora- ition has better buying power than ian independent store, too. : Arenson's serves a large area iof patients, with several towns ibetween Annandale and the near- iest pharmacies (in St. Cloud, Paynesville, Buffalo, or Winsted). :Some come from even further away for the personalized and friendly service. Indeed, during the ihour we spoke with Mark, several custom- ers commented on the sale, even hugging Mark and praising him profusely. The new store will keep the same hours that Arenson's has kept for years: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; Saturdays 9 a.m.-2 p.m.; and closed Sundays. The pharmacy phone number will go to the new Thrifty White store. technology," Mark said, explain- ing that his father was an old- school pharmacist. Mark has brought the business out of the "It's a Wonderful Life" or "Andy Griffith" old-fashioned local drugstore into a more mod- ern operation. Changes in drug pricing, with middle men adding 100-400 percent to the manufac- turer's price, are making privately owned pharmacies a thing of the past. lust as there are no more private doctor offices, Arenson explained, there are no private pharmacies. He can't think of any that have or changing the use entirely. "It's big enough for a bowling alley," he joked, "or an archery range." In the short term, after Christmas, they likely will close out the health and beauty aids department, as these things are readily available in town in other stores. Other departments may be phased out as well. Doctor Comfort, the cus- tom diabetic shoe department, will have to be discontinued. Two things are needed to con- tinue that, Arenson explained: a licensed fitter, and Medicare bill- ing status. Once the pharmacy is sold, they will no longer be able It's EASY to renew or subscnbel By mail, phone, fax, web, or e-mail. (See order form on page 24.) Arenson's Annandale Pharmacy has been a mainstay on main street in Annanclale since 1971. The store will remain for the near future, although the pharmacy inventory and records will be sold to Thrifty White as of Dec. 6. Staff photo by Jean Doran Matua.