Pharmacist with a heart.
When was the pharcacy founded? And how did it come to be founded?
That was on 3rd May 1991.
At that time, Dr. Hans Dobbert, was head of pharmaceutical centre in Forst. This was the Hufeland Pharmacy, in which several pharmacists worked in different departments. Then came the “Wende” in 1989, the market was opened and with it the desire for independence. My father then founded the pharmacy “Cottbuser Straße” at Cottbuser Straße 26a. In 2002 the pharmacy moved to number 26, the current premises, as the Sparkasse Spree-Neiße opened its new branch in Cottbuser Straße 26a.
Was it always clear to you that you were taking over the pharmacy?
No, I actually wanted to be a veterinarian. That was my dream job at the time. But as it was then, there was only 1 college place at the university in Leipzig but 2 applicants. The other applicant was probably a little better and got the place. Today he is our supervising veterinarian. So I started studying geology in 1988 and after the “Wende” I said geology is nothing for me and started studying pharmacy.
What was your big challenge during the takeover?
I lived and studied in Berlin for a very long time, so you were more or less anonymous. After the time in Berlin it was indeed a bit of a change to come back to Forst, which is relatively small-divided, where everyone knows everyone. But I never had a problem with it. Everybody know each other, everybody appreciate each other and everybody help each other. That’s what I like about my hometown, and isn’t it like that, that sooner or later you’re drawn back to your home town? I never regretted this step and was looking forward to the new assignment to continue the pharmacy “Cottbuser Straße” in the second generation. The pharmacy has been in existence for 29 years in 2020. 16 years under my leadership and I go to work every day with great joy and found my dream job in the second attempt.
You are also the president of the Brandenburg Chamber of Pharmacists?
Yes, since 2012. Somehow I seem to be influenced by my parents. My father built up the Brandenburg Pharmacists’ Association after the “Wende”; he was also its chairman for 10 years. As a young colleague, I asked myself how to get involved in our profession. That’s how I ended up at the Brandenburg State Chamber of Pharmacists. This is the second professional organisation that represents the interests of our profession alongside the Pharmacists’ Association. On 1st January 2004 I took over the pharmacy and was elected vice president in autumn 2004. In 2012, I stood for election as president and my colleagues in the state of Brandenburg gave me their trust with their vote. Thus I represent the interests of the approx. 1,800 pharmacists of the state of Brandenburg at state and federal level.
What do you like about your job?
The many contacts with people, the cooperation with my employees and the fact that many people from Forst seek advice in our pharmacy. In the last few years, we have developed our product range and our services into a contact point for all health issues. We serve second and even third generation families. We know each other and we appreciate each other. Of course, I can’t do all this on my own.
I am very grateful to my staff team, my pharmacists and pharmacy engineers, my PTA’s and my PCA’s, my bookkeeper and of course my wife who is responsible for our cosmetic area, for sharing my philosophy in the care and support of our patients and for all of us working together with one motto: “Your health is our mission!” Without a well-functioning team, the Cottbuser Straße pharmacy would not be what it is today – a house of health!
How does the increasing internet trade affect your pharmacy?
Of course, we are also feeling the mail order business. The bargain hunters are just everywhere. However, the internet does not offer this personal and individual advice as we do. Especially as we are much faster than any mail order company.
What is budensome about your job or work?
The political framework conditions and the enormous influence of the health insurance company through concluded discount contracts do not always make our work easy. We have to deal with supply shortagse on a daily basis, we have to write applications for permits to the health insurance companies. In an age of globalisation, we must make a great effort to get the medicines we need for our patients if the production of drugs in China or India fails for whatever reason. The sum of these points does not make the work very easy. But we always provide and usually find a solution to ensure that patients receive and are cared for their needed medication.
Another point is the problem of skilled workers, which also conjures up wrinkles of concern on the forehead in all other sectors We have an ageing society, young people are emigrating and finding a new home in other regions of the Federal Republic. It is a huge challenge for politicians to make this region interesting for young people as well. Especially in the discussion about the structural change of Lusatia this should not be lost sight of.
What are your plans for the future?
Pharmacies are also undergoing a digital transformation. My pharmacies in Forst and Spremberg are quite well positioned digitally. Our entire ordering process is already completely digital. Patients can also pre-order their medications via app or e-mail. However, it is important to me that we do not lose personal contact with patients despite all the digitization. Even in the age of digitization, we are there for patients personally. Of course, this also means that we are available to patients for any questions regarding the upcoming electronic prescription. No patient has to be afraid of it – we are there for them.
Our courier service is on the road every day in Forst and the surrounding area in order to supply you personally and comprehensively by this way as well. No mail order business can offer this, too. We have an employee of the pharmacy Cottbuser Straße and no postman or other delivery service.
The team of the pharmacy “Cottbuser Straße”
Your “House of Health” for Forst and environment
03149 Forst (Lausitz)
Saturday: 8:00am to 12:00am