SALISBURY — David Post and MedExpress Pharmacy won the Small Business of the Year Award Thursday night from the Rowan County Chamber of Commerce.
Co-owned by Post, his brother Jon Post and Joe Hager, the pharmacy has earned a spot for the past six years on the Inc. 5000 list of the fastest growing companies in America.
Located at 1431 W. Innes St. since 2001, the business has grown from a lone employee to nearly 30 on staff today.
“That’s one thing that I’m proud of, that we’ve brought good jobs to Salisbury,” David Post told the Chamber audience at the Holiday Inn.
Revenue has grown by 20 percent to 30 percent each year, reaching nearly $30 million in annual sales.
A specialty pharmacy focused on chronic illness management and hands-on patient service, MedExpress was originally founded in 1995 by the National Association of People with AIDS and now serves patients living with many other chronic issues, such as diabetes, fertility, transplantation and cancer.
The Chamber chooses the annual winner not only for business success but for civic involvement. Post and MedExpress have served numerous community groups, including Piedmont Players Theatre, PFLAG, Rowan County United Way and Historic Salisbury Foundation, said Cindy Hart, incoming Chamber chairwoman for 2013.
MedExpress has thousands of patients, but few live in Salisbury. Post said he plans to launch local corporate programs soon, as well as a free vitamin initiative for families with children.
He said he hopes to work with the Rowan-Salisbury School System to offer flu shots to teachers at work.
“That will save hundreds of lost sick days,” Post said.
The pharmacy will begin collecting unused and unwanted medication to help keep prescription drugs out of the drinking water supply, he said.
Through innovative use by patients of photo identification cards for each prescription, as well as monthly phone calls to patients, the pharmacy has achieved a 90 percent compliance rate for drug use, Post said. That means the vast majority of MedExpress patients take their medications correctly.
The national compliance rate is about 33 percent, Post said, which has cost the U.S. up to $300 billion in hospital stays, drug interaction problems, wasted medication and additional prescriptions.
A one-day hospital stay for a person with HIV can cost more than a month of medication, he said.
Also during the meeting, the Chamber thanked outgoing Chairman Greg Edds.
The Rowan Chamber is the sixth largest in the Charlotte region, with more than 900 members and a 33 percent membership penetration rate, Edds said. The national average rate is less than 20 percent.
“The bottom line is this has been another good year for the Rowan County Chamber with the strong support of our membership,” Edds said.
Edds acknowledged Bob Wright, who retired as Chamber president last month.
Under Wright’s leadership, the Chamber is debt-free and has a building “that is the envy of chambers all across the country,” Edds said. The building is located at 204 E. Innes St.
Next week, the Chamber will begin a strategic planning and visioning process to determine how best to meet the needs of the community, Edds said.
New chairwoman Hart said 2013 will mark a new attitude for the organization, which will have a “new spirit of collaboration and partnership-building.”
Hart said she plans to strengthen resources and offer a larger network of business support systems, with more member visits, phone calls and communication.
“I cherish your support and ideas,” she said.
Contact reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.