Letter: Mail-order medicine is the problem

Published: 9/14/2020 12:02:22 AM

The Sept. 4 article by Teddy Rosenbluth paints a picture of prescription medicine patients who rely on the USPS to deliver their medicines potentially going without their medicine because of delays in the mail. The real problem is using the mail for prescriptions in the first place. Prescriptions should be purchased locally, from a pharmacy that you know and trust.

If there is a difference in prescription costs to the patient, those differences are structured by the insurance company (or the middlemen – the prescription benefit managers) solely to steer business to their own mail-order pharmacy. It is not the pharmacies that set the prices; it is the prescription card payors. Congress should force the insurance companies to offer the same prices at local pharmacies as through the mail – it should be the patient’s choice where they get their medicine. New York state has done this at the state level.

Medicare patients have a choice in their prescription plans. They should choose a plan that offers the same price locally as through the mail. Patients should remember these issues when they choose their 2021 plan. When choosing a benefit package, employers should insist on having their employees having access to local pharmacies at the same price as thorough the mail, making it the employee’s choice if they want to “buy local.” And shame on the state of New Hampshire for forcing its retirees to deal with the mail-order pharmacy hassles instead of a local trusted professional.



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