The Petaluma Health Care District has been working to get a Walgreens pharmacy built on South McDowell Boulevard for more than a year. Because the Walgreens includes a pick-up window, and the city has a moratorium on new drive-thrus, the project has had an uphill battle getting the city’s approval. At a recent city council meeting, a group of mostly senior residents came out to show their support for the project, passionately describing how difficult it can be to get out of the car and wait at traditional pharmacies. It seemed to sway some council members, who now are considering an amendment to the city’s general plan to allow pharmacy pick-up windows. A majority of those who responded to this week’s unofficial poll agreed that an amendment should be made for this project. Here were some of the comments:
“Absolutely! This is for medication, not for hamburgers or coffee.”
——
“The drive up pharmacy is a great service to people who have restricted ambulatory abilities. I hope the council really thinks this through.”
——
“A drive up window is very important for the disabled.”
——
“As a disabled person myself, I find the concept of drive-thru pharmacy a wonderful idea whose time has come. Both the CVS pharmacies are in the back of the store as well as Safeway’s pharmacy, which is very hard for those of us who walk with a cane.”
——
“A drive-thru for any business should be allowed because those who would need to take advantage of the pharmacy drive-thru have the right to have access to a drive-thru at other businesses. The reason for the ban is driven by the liberal elitists on the west side.”
——
“I recently had a knee replacement and had to walk to the back of drug store to get pain medicine. Then all the way back to the front to leave. Sure would have been easier and less painful to drive through.”
——
“The neighbors across the street, which includes my family and myself, as well as my neighbors, would not appreciate the gas fumes as the result of cars waiting to pick-up their prescriptions.”
——
“Surely if we can wait in our cars for coffee we can do so for medication.”
——
“What about senior citizens who have a difficult time getting around? What about sick people who are contagious and have no business walking into a store and spreading their illness?”
­——
“Petaluma should absolutely allow pharmacies to have a drive-thru windows to pick up prescriptions. I personally know of disabled persons who are able to drive, but are unable to get out of their vehicles without extreme difficulties or the help of a second person. This would provide much-needed assistance.”
——
“The city should hold to the general plan. There seems to be no stopping variance requests from corporations that wish to locate here. If a variance is granted for one location in a neighborhood, then all requests for the same variance must granted and the restriction is gone. Do you want more pick up windows operating in that neighborhood in the future? Restrictions are placed in general plans for good reasons.”
——
“This would not only help people with disabilities, it would help parents with small children in the car who may be sleeping. The parent could drive up to the window and let the child sleep until they got home. Waking a small child up to enter a pharmacy is not the most pleasant thing to do.”