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Diverse Community Finds One-Stop Health Shop At Fairview Pharmacy

Yanet Nacer and Dwight Montfort of Fairview Pharmacy.
Yanet Nacer and Dwight Montfort of Fairview Pharmacy. Photo Credit: Melissa Heule

FAIRVIEW, N.J. — Dwight R. Montfort knew he and his wife made the right choice to operate a pharmacy in a needy community when a customer held up a bottle of shampoo and didn't know what it was.

Montfort, the supervising pharmacist of Fairview Pharmacy, and wife Yanet Nacer, a pharmacy technician, spend seven days a week together filling prescriptions and answering questions in their months-old shop.

The Washington Heights, N.Y. couple say they are proud to serve those who have a hard time understanding medications because of illiteracy, language barriers, or complicated healthcare protocols.

“Some of the people cannot even read or understand what they are taking. They come from chain stores asking us what their doctor issued them,” Montfort said.

“You wouldn’t believe some of the people who come in here with lacerations,” he added, as his wife nodded in agreement.

“They come here first and we tell them, 'No, I think you’re going to need stitches for that',” he said.

They've also helped customers avoid medication allergies, get help after lice outbreaks or find relief from pain.

Montfort even made a house call for a homebound 92-year-old military veteran.

“I’m also an X-ray technician so I do a little consulting, if someone has an issue,” Nacer said.

She then moved to attend to a Spanish-speaking customer as the front door opened.

“I am a few months pregnant and wanted to know if I should take this headache medicine or not," said customer Ana Flores. "Now I know."

Montfort said he can keep prices lower than chain stores, even by a third or even half the price.

"Every pharmacist dreams of opening his own business,” he said. “I’m able to fill prescriptions in a few minutes.

"I personally waited an hour in a chain store for a prescription once. Little did they know I used to be their boss.”

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