TOWSON — As some restrictions begin to soften and businesses start to partially re-open, more people are getting back to work. For some, they never stopped working like doctors, nurses and pharmacists.
"We're just as important as your emergency room and your emergency room in a hospital will never close and neither will a pharmacy. We have to be here for our patients. We care for them the same way a doctor or nurse cares for you. We’re essentially on the front line with them. We have to make sure our patients always take their medications," said Priscilla Novotny, Pharmacy Tech at Dulaney Valley Health Mart Pharmacy.
She said at the beginning of the shutdown, many people were scared they wouldn't be able to get their medication.
The Pharmacist, Dr. Bertha Ndje, said "we saw a lot of panic in the community because they thought the pharmacy was gong to be closed so everyone wanted a three month supply." Dr. Ndje explained how busy they were at that time, filling prescriptions and stocking up on medicine that might be harder to get right now.
Now, while their volume of prescriptions has did down, many customers are struggling financially and can't pay their co-pay so they started a charge account.
"As pharmacists we are here to help our customers and especially our community, all of us are going through this," said Dr. Ndje. She added, "I know how important those medications are for them so I will tell them just get your medication so we can remove a little bit of that burden and then later on you will pay us."
They also gave some hand sanitizer to other workers in the Dulaney Plaza shopping center who are open, since they were able to get some.
People can still come into the pharmacy, if they're wearing a mask. Once that person leaves, everything they touched like the door or pin pad is wiped down with alcohol. While people can come into the store, they're encouraging their customers to use curbside pick up or free contactless delivery.
"We're actually allowed to sign on behalf of the patient on behalf of the insurance companies right now. You have to put COVID-19," said Novotny.