As a means of continuing the 60-year legacy of Longbella Drug, co-owners Chad Longbella and Lani LongbellaRoberts, have made the decision to sell Longbella Drug to Lakewood Health System. Chad and Lani were looking for opportunities to continue to provide the Staples community with the outstanding pharmacy services and products for which the family-owned business has been known. It was also important to keep the family, including third-generation pharmacist, Tanner Roberts, and the Longbella name, in the pharmacy business. This also provides a way to continue Lakewood’s long-standing commitment to the health and well-being of the community.
Along with new ownership, Longbella Drug, as it will continue to be named, will also be moving their primary downtown location to the east end of The Plaza, the new construction project spearheaded by Lakewood, located on Highway 10 next to Ernie’s. The new pharmacy space will be approximately 4,200 square feet and there will be a large retail space, a convenient drive-thru and patient consultation areas. In the future, customers can expect expanded specialty medication options as well. The Longbella Drug Clinic (at Lakewood) and Longbella Drug Pillager sites will remain in their current locations.
As with all transitions of this nature, there are still some unknowns and variables to figure out before Lakewood takes over ownership and management on January 1, 2024. Ongoing conversations between Lakewood administration and the current Longbella owners are being had to ensure all aspects of the transition are as seamless as possible for both staff and customers.
The addition of Longbella Drug to the Lakewood organization is an extension of service and products; it will not be taking the place of any existing Lakewood pharmacy or retail offerings.
“While this decision was not easy, it was made after a lot of thoughtful, intentional discussions about Longbella Drug’s history and future,” said Lani LongbellaRoberts, Longbella pharmacist and co-owner. “We determined this would be the best option for everyone because our family’s business has been part of the Staples community for 60 years and having worked with Lakewood, we saw this as a great opportunity to ensure our legacy lives on.”
“Having the opportunity to add the service, expertise and tradition Longbella has long-offered the Staples community seemed like a perfect continuation of Lakewood’s mission to provide quality, personalized healthcare for a lifetime,” said Lisa Bjerga, Lakewood president and CEO. “It not only allows us additional opportunities to improve the health and wellness of our community, but contributes directly to the economic growth and health of Staples, as well.”