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Friday, January 13, 2012

Walgreens helps you with the Express Scripts program problem

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walgreens for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

The rising costs of medical care affect us all.  In particular, the cost of prescription drugs can make it difficult for us to pay for our health care needs.  Walgreens has always been a great place to get quality prescriptions at an affordable price.  So I'm glad to see that they are taking steps to help people who are suffering from the problems with Express Scripts.  

Despite their best efforts, Walgreens was unable to negotiate a mutually beneficial contract with the Express Scripts provider network, after a year of negotiations.  As a result, the contract expired on December 31, 2011, and Walgreens is no longer part of Express Scripts’ pharmacy provider network as of Jan. 1, 2012. This includes all Walgreens pharmacies nationwide and Duane Reade pharmacies in the New York City area.  Express Scripts have put America in the middle, while pharmacy profits remain flat and Express Scripts profits increase.  As a middleman type of operation, Express Scripts does not provide the services of a pharmacist, while skimming off the profits that should go to the pharmacies, 

Walgreens and Express Script

Only patients with certain prescription insurance plans managed by Express Scripts are impacted. It is best to check with your local Walgreens pharmacist to find out for sure if you’re impacted. Patients also can check the back of their prescription insurance card – if it has Express Scripts’ name there, then they may be affected. If it doesn’t say Express Scripts, then they are not affected.
In particular, the military and employers are suffering because Express Scripts requires them to go through pharmacies in the Express Scripts plan.  Those who have depended upon Walgreens over the years often have no choice but to resort to the Express Scripts mail-order [plan, which can be expensive and time-consuming.  
Patients covered by the Express Scripts program are being forced to change pharmacists and, in many cases to drive long distances to fill their prescriptions.  They are gaining no benefits in terms of their costs going down, and they are experiencing a lot of hassle.  It is pain with no gain.  This was unnecessary, and Walgreens is taking steps to help all those customers who have been affected by the situation. 
Walgreens is offering meaningful help to those affected by the situation.  Among the steps Walgreens is taking to minimize the disruption is offering a special discount on annual membership for its Prescription Savings Club. An individual can join during a special January promotion for only $5, or $10 for a family membership, and receive savings on more than 8,000 brand name and all generic medications. More than 400 generics are available with a three-month supply for less than $1 a week. Regular annual membership is $20 for an individual and $35 for a family.
What a great deal!  Sign me up! 

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