Medication At Your Dorm Step


Photo Courtesy of Capsule

Capsule founders Eric Kinariwala and Sonia Patel created the new pharmacy to make getting prescriptions more seamless.

Kaitlyn Wang, Contributing Writer

When Eric Kinariwala had the flu a year and a half ago and had to pick up his medication, he said that everything that could have gone wrong did. Detailing a visit to the pharmacy that only got worse every step of the way, Kinariwala told of waiting in an excruciatingly long line, only to be informed that his medication was out of stock at the counter. That’s when Capsule came to be.

Capsule Pharmacy, created by Kinariwala in partnership with longtime friend and pharmacist Sonia Patel, aims to eliminate the problems found in the current pharmacy experience. It is a fully digital platform that allows customers to manage everything through their website or their IOS mobile app. Most importantly, Capsule delivers your medication straight to your doorstep, be it dorm or off-campus housing, without an added fee.

In Manhattan’s Chelsea district, Capsule owns and operates a physical pharmacy, but its signature delivery service means that patrons never have to visit if they don’t want to.

But delivery is not the only aspect of Capsule that makes it special. Kinariwala said that since Capsule owns its own pharmacy, it’s not just a courier service for medication.

“Capsule’s totally different,” Kinariwala said. “We’ve built it completely from the inside out. And we’ve rebuilt all the software that actually powers the back of the pharmacy.”

One such aspect is easy access to a pharmacist, and the privacy that comes with that. The website and app allow patrons to text, chat, email or call a pharmacist when needed. Without the line to worry about, patrons can get the information they need with the discretion they want, according to Kinariwala.

“Delivery’s one component of rebuilding the experience, but there’s lots of other things that are painful,” he said. “We like to really think about the idea that everyone needs some looking after sometimes.”

Capsule accepts any insurance company, including NYU’s student insurance, and the co-pays would be the same as students’ existing pharmacy. New users create accounts through the website or the app and fill out a form about their medications, or they can ask their doctor to send their prescription to Capsule.

Capsule currently serves the five boroughs of New York City, but for students who leave the city during school breaks, Capsule still has it covered.

“We can have your doctor write a longer prescription, depending on how long you’re gone for,” Kinariwala said. “And the other important thing is coordinating with whatever pharmacy you use wherever you are to make sure you could get that dose to make sure there’s no interruption in your coverage.”

Kinariwala and Patel are aiming to revolutionize the way people interact with their pharmacy to make the process as simple and accessible as possible.

Email Kaitlyn Wang at [email protected]