A patent medicine store is what you will usually call a chemist or pharmacist. However, chemist is just a general name used to refer to a patent store. A patent medicine store is one that stocks and sells over the counter (O.T.C) drugs.
Patent stores are usually run and managed by individuals who feel the need to serve a community or locale in such capacity. Patent medicine stores are not usually run by pharmacists. Patent medicine stores are also majorly found in remote villages where pharmacies and chemist stores are scarce. You will also find them within streets in cities. The aim of patent medicine stores is to augment the services of the pharmacist in towns and cities. It is supposed to help makeover the counter drugs easily accessible to people. This is why patent medicine stores are not supposed to be called chemist. Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (P.C.N) approves that patent medicine stores operate within the shores of the country only.
Who can open and operate a Patent Medicine store
You might be wondering who can open or run a patent medicine store in Nigeria; well, a patent medicine store can be managed by anyone who has adequate and good knowledge about drugs or who has gone through some sort of training process about drugs and their usage.
The profitability of Patent Medicine stores
You might be wondering how lucrative a patent medicine store is. Well, this business is very lucrative because drugs and medicines are essentials just like food. However, running a patent medicine store is very delicate because it involves human lives. This is why the requirements for starting a Patent medicine store are strict. The requirements to start a Patent Medicine store are almost the same within the country. Read on below:
Registration of Patent Medicine Store
The National Association of Proprietary and Patent Medicine Dealers (N.A.P.P.M.D) is the body approved by the Pharmacist Council of Nigeria to manage and control patent medicines stores. The body also helps to make sure people keep to the rules and instructions from PCN. In order to join the body, a one-year one-time payment is required, this payment varies from location to location. It is used as a welcome and introduction to the group.
A yearly fee is also collected. The amount depends on your location. Many like to avoid membership with the National Association of Proprietary and Patent Medicine Dealers (N.A.P.P.M.D), but this can cause lots of stress in the future.
Obtaining a License
It is illegal not to obtain a license from the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria before starting a Patent Medicine store in Nigeria. PCN issues you some certificates through the ministry of health of the state where you want to operate your patent business.
The Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria is the regulating body in respect of patent and proprietary medicine vendors and the pharmaceutical industries and distributors in Nigeria.
Register your business name
The next important step is to register your business name with the Cooperate Affairs Commission (C.A.C). Follow the steps below:
- Pay a visit to any of their state branch.
Get ready with two business names which you are sure have not been used before.
- Submit it to the Cooperate Affairs Commission (CAC).
- Wait for approval of the names you submitted. If the names are not approved, change the name. This occurs often if the name is taken or closely related to another.
- Finally, take the approved name to CAC.
- The commission will demand a copy of the certificate/license from the Pharmacist Council of Nigeria in order to incorporate your company name.
- CAC will also require bits of information including proof of payments of their charges.Other laws which must be followed in order to start a Patent store includes:
- Making sure your store is hygienic in nature. Your patent medicine store should not be close to where dirt or garbage is deposited or other unhygienic locations.
- The environmental condition must be conducive for both the buyer and seller.
- A patent store must not be located close to another. The minimum distance allowed is a pole apart (200 meters) in busy areas and or two poles (400 meters) for less busy areas.
Starting your Patent Medicine Store
Below are practical tips on starting your Patent Medicine store
Have a business plan
After meeting all registration requirements, it is important you evaluate how to start. You can only get this done by having a concrete and viable business plan. Things to consider when writing your business plan include:
The amount you intend to invest: The bulk of the money is usually spent on the registration and renting of a suitable store. You should also look at employing a pharmacy technician to help you in running the store.
Ensure you find a credible supplier: This is essential because nowadays, many sell fake and sub-standard drugs. This could put you in trouble with the law if you are found dealing with such people. It should not be difficult to find a credible supplier via referral especially if you register with NAPPMD.
Tips to Succeed as A Patent Medicine Vendor
- Location: Decide on a good location to put your store. A good place will be one that lacks access to primary health care (P.H.C). This will mean increased demand and more patronage for your business.
- Experience: It is extremely important you get adequate knowledge before going into drug and patent business. Basic knowledge is needed to run this business well. It is also essential so you do not give wrong prescriptions to customers.
- Adequate Advert: There are laws guiding patent store adverts. Find out about these laws and use them to your advantage. Adverts are important for any business so people can get to know about your business and patronize you.
- Attend Orientation: The Pharmacist Council of Nigeria organises orientation for patent medicine dealers every two years. Ensure you attend these orientation programs so you learn about new and innovative products.