This post is sponsored by Social Spark for Walgreens. All opinions are humble, mine, and written for your pleasure.
If you are a parent, you’ve been there. A late night emergency room visit with a miserable little one. After several exhausting hours you gather up the tuckered out toddler, purse, diaper bag, paperwork and prescriptions, head to the car and take a deep breath. It’s not only late, it’s almost early. The medication the doc prescribed needs to be started as soon as possible. Options? Well, if you were me you could drive twenty feet from the hospital door to the Walgreens parking lot. From there, you could hit the 24 hour drive through pharmacy window and after a short wait, put an end to a very long night.
Sounds wonderful, right? Well if you are an Express Scripts member, your nights are going to drag on a whole lot longer. Recently, Walgreens and Express Scripts failed to come to an agreement during contract negotiations. Feel free to read more on the matter by following this link:Walgreens and Express Scripts As a result, Express Scripts has removed Walgreens from their provider network. Bummer. Big bummer. Sure, there are plenty of insurance companies for Walgreens to do business with, and they do.
The big problem for Walgreens is how to continue the best possible care for patients who have trusted a single pharmacy for their needs. They strive to offer valuable services such as their Prescription Savings Club at Walgreens As a person who worked in a pharmacy and saw the frustration of patients when records had to be shuttled to another store, I have seen how hard the transition can be. Sure there are many patients who bounce from pharmacy to pharmacy without a care. But many, especially the elderly, or patients who have to special order medications, don’t want to go through the process of a pharmacy “learning” about their needs. Traumatic might be too strong a word, it might not. For some, just seeing a new face behind the counter at a tried and true pharmacy brings a sense of unease. In a pharmacy, happy patients make for a joyful workflow.
Another facet to this fallout is that one of Express Scripts clients is Tricare. Tricare is the main coverage used by the military. Our service men and women deserve the convenience of quick and easy pharmacy service for their families. By cutting pharmacies out of the provider list, Express Scripts has removed personal choice on the part of the patient. Walgreens has expressed sincere dismay at not being able to continue providing services to our military.
If you are wondering what was at the heart of the contract disagreement, I urge you to read the links provided below. From what I have read, Walgreens seems intent on keeping costs competitive, for their bottom line, and low for the benefit of the patient. It would have been illogical for them to submit to the demands that would have been imposed on them.
In conclusion I would ask you to go get your insurance card and give it a glance. If the Express Scripts logo is nowhere to be found on the card, you are in the clear. If it does appear, then, please, read all the the links I have provided and then contact Express Scripts or your local media. Tell them how changing pharmacies will affect your day to day routine and possibly your personal safety. Being proactive is the first step to excellent health care and expanded personal choice.