Walgreens and Express Scripts: Contract Expired
We all know how expensive prescriptions can be. I just filled a prescription for migraine medication and some nose spray for my sinuses and even with insurance I walked out $40 poorer. There are just so many changes with healthcare lately and most of it is not for the better which means more out of pocket costs for everyone.
One of the many recent healthcare changes will affect Express Scripts members. Walgreens and Express Script have been in negotiations for a new contract to continue to be a part of its pharmacy provider network. Negotiations were unsuccessful and now the contract is expired as of Dec. 31. Now, Walgreens is no longer a part of the Express Script pharmacy provider network as of Jan. 1, 2012. This means all Walgreens pharmacies nationwide.
If you are a Express Script Member, what does this mean for you?
Express Scripts members who fill their prescriptions at their local Walgreens will be forced to go elsewhere to use their in-network pharmacy benefits. Patients covered by an Express Scripts plan now have to change their pharmacists and many members now have to drive farther to get prescriptions filled at pharmacies with less convenient hours for their hectic schedules. Walgreens offers more 24-hour and drive-thru pharmacies than any other pharmacy in the country. I know in my area Walgreens are conveniently located on many corners and not only that they are the only ones who have always had the prescriptions that I need. It is a big inconvenience for Express Scripts members especially when they are still paying the same premiums to be a member.
What is Walgreens doing to help ease the burden?
Walgreens is offering customers a special discount on their annual membership to the Walgreens Prescription Savings Club. For only $10 a year, a family membership covers everyone in your immediate family (spouse, dependents 22 and younger and even pets!) Individuals can join for only $5. By joining you’ll receive discount prices on your prescriptions at any Walgreens pharmacy.
Other Walgreens Prescription Savings Club Benefits:
Savings on more than 8,000 brand-name and all generic medications
Discounts on flu shots, pet prescriptions, nebulizers and diabetic supplies
Bonuses when you purchase Walgreens brand products and photofinishing services