We’re excited to introduce Roger Wu, The Pill Club’s Head of Pharmacy Operations for our home state of California. Like our medical team, pharmacy operations are the lifeblood of our organization, helping to ensure that thousands of members across the country receive their birth control shipments, uninterrupted. Patient Care’s Jorge Vargas recently spoke with Roger about his passion for the pharmacy business, the gratification of solving problems, and the one superpower he’d like to have.
What are three facts about you that might surprise people?I lived in Taiwan for about a year when I was 4 years old, so naturally, I love traditional Taiwanese foods like stinky tofu (a classic!) and boba—it pretty much runs through my veins.
I consider myself an extroverted introvert. I love working with people and attending social events, but definitely need time to recharge alone with my shows (let me know if you have recommendations!).
My partner and I are nerds at heart: to give you an example, we had a pokemon-themed wedding, and it was awesome!
Tell us about your path that led to The Pill Club.I’ve graduated from every step of the pharmacy workflow—from cashier/clerk and technician, to intern, pharmacist, and now, pharmacist-in-charge (PIC). Throughout these stages, I’ve grown to understand the limitations of the traditional brick and mortar pharmacy. That’s why I’m so excited about how we can use technology to modernize the pharmacy world.
Before The Pill Club, I worked for a mail order hemodialysis pharmacy. I learned the importance of having interdisciplinary teams to provide critical medications to patients at their convenience—it also has a huge impact on their adherence and clinical outcomes. The Pill Club also has this model, combined with a powerful social mission, and I fell in love with the opportunity to help build a platform to increase access and modernize healthcare for women.
What do you consider to be your greatest strength?I really like solving problems. My style is to stay objective, listen to all perspectives, and find a solution that will work for all parties. Where I work in Pharmacy Ops, oftentimes you need to find the middle ground between tech, compliance, and business considerations. While it may appear to be a complex puzzle, it’s gratifying to find the solution in the end!
What motivates or inspires you professionally?Paying off student loans! (just kidding). At the end of the day, knowing that what we’re doing is positively impacting someone else’s life gives me the drive to come to work every day. And that’s not just our patients, but our teammates as well. We’ve had to adapt quickly during this historic moment in time—both as a business and employer—and I’m very proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish and continue to do.
What’s the best career advice you can give?Always keep learning and every mistake is an opportunity to grow. I can’t count the number of times I’ve thought “they didn’t teach this to us in pharmacy school.” Working at The Pill Club, I’ve become more fluent with technology and continue to develop my leadership and management style. And with every stumble, you learn and improve for the next time. In my perspective, a career is a journey: even if you reach your dream destination, it’s always important to keep learning to continually better yourself.
If you could change anything about the world, what would it be?Climate change. I don't know if it's a matter of changing everyone’s behavior or if there’s a world in which we could live somewhere that’s resistant to what we’re doing to it. I don't think changing any one thing will solve climate change. As humans, we have so much to navigate right now—a pandemic, wildfires, hurricanes. If there was one thing that could solve for all of these, that’s what I would want to change.
If you could have any superpower, but it came with a catch, what would it be?As a kid, I wanted to control the elements. Wind, fire, water, earth. That's what surrounds us, and it would be awesome to manipulate your environment. The catch: I would have to eat a lot to sustain my power (I wouldn't have to worry about calories, though!).