Island Drug - Aaron Syring


As a young pharmacist, Aaron Syring, PharmD, saw an entrepreneurial goal come to fruition when he purchased Island Drug in Oak Harbor, Wash. However, within a decade he realized that to grow his business, he would need to expand the pharmacy’s footprint. With the variety of health care products and services Syring wanted to provide, space was becoming an issue. At the time the pharmacy was about 7,000 square feet with limited parking. It was located away from the center of Oak Harbor, a town of some 22,000 residents on Whidbey Island, about an hour and a half northwest of Seattle in Puget Sound. So the decision was made to build a new pharmacy from the ground up. Syring, a 2002 Washington State University pharmacy graduate, had a number of items on his wish list. “As we started to grow, we decided we needed more elbow room,” he says. “The whole goal was to provide a better customer experience. Our customers have been really good to us over the years, and we wanted to in turn be good to them and make a trip to the pharmacy a good experience.” By all indications, there have been plenty of good experiences since the 10,000-square-foot facility opened on April 29, 2013. Along with the prescription area, it has a lunch counter; long-term care and durable medication equipment sections; compounding lab; immunization room; a dedicated area for CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure); and gifts, cards, and over the counter products. “We were looking to capture the Northwest theme,” he says. “We wanted some- thing unique, but Northwest at the same time. Our tagline is ‘service excellence, delivered locally.’ That sums it up, whether it is medical equipment, gifts, CPAP, DME, or immunizations, it’s all about delivering a higher level of service to our community. So everything that we did in this project was centered on how we could do it better.” In the interior, Syring says he wanted “wider aisles and an inviting atmosphere, not the bright white that some of the big boxes have. The customers seem to like the atmosphere.” As for Syring, he couldn’t be more pleased with how things turned out. “Now we’re right in the center of town, on the state highway,” he says. “It makes a big difference being centrally located. We have much more parking, and lots of different ways to access the property, which is convenient for our customers.”


230 SE Pioneer Way
Oak Harbor, Washington 98277
United States

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