Santosh Sahu: At Charac, We Believe In Supporting Community Pharmacies to Digitise

August 9, 2022

At Charac, we believe in supporting community pharmacies to digitise, therefore enabling them to safeguard their business on the high street and create new revenue sources which can compete with online pharmacies.

Our platform enables pharmacies to digitise their current processes by providing repeat prescription and online consultations via phone, video, desktop or mobile.

Tell us about yourself?

As a diabetic patient, I was always having to make calls to my pharmacy for prescriptions, which I also wasn’t able to properly track, which is always concerning when you need access to this critical medication for day-to-day life.

With a background in entrepreneurial tech, I knew that the answer to this issue was to empower pharmacies through digitisation. The high streets of the UK are what the heart of our towns and cities, so I also wanted to do my part to help their survival.

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

I’d make sure I worked with a pharmacist right at the beginning. Having a subject matter expert means that the user experience is vastly improved, so not having this when we initially launched the product was a misstep which I am glad we quickly rectified.

What problem does your business solve?

Charac empowers community pharmacies through technology.

A lot of these businesses do not have the means or ability to integrate technology on their own, but via our platform, we are able to connect patients to pharmacies – making it much easier to have a consultation, or order a repeat prescription, which we were able to do last year through integration with NHS IM1.

This year, we’ve partnered with Royal Mail to offer prescription delivery services through the postal service.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

I was inspired by my personal background as a diabetic patient needing to get regular prescriptions which I could track, alongside my desire to save community pharmacies on the high street.

What is your magic sauce?

For me it is always hard work and perseverance in solving a problem which has purpose, scale and immediate market fit.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

Charac exists to champion independent community pharmacies to survive and thrive, and over the next year we plan to sign up over 1,000 UK pharmacies across London, Manchester, Birmingham and further afield.

These small multiple and independent pharmacies account for almost 40% of all of those in the UK. Over the next five years, we’ll focus on assisting pharmacies in delivering millions of consultations which they can record on our platform.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

Mobilising resources to work at pace in an industry which can be less agile than others has certainly been challenging, particularly as healthcare is very heavily regulated and the technology is often outdated.

How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

We want community pharmacists to get on board with our platform and really realise their capabilities.

By putting your pharmacy on a patient’s mobile device, you’ll be able to have a direct link with them and deliver a great service.

Get in touch with us by visiting charac.co.uk to see how we can help you!

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