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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Health Care - get it under control

In Washington State, Walgreen's across the entire state will no longer be accepting Medicaid prescriptions because it is costing them money.

They will continue to do the prescripts for those patients that make it in before April 16th but those that bring in a new one after that date are out of luck.

It costs them too much money to fill these prescripts ....

Washington state, which reimburses Walgreen's for the drugs, cuts down the price it says that the drugs are worth to the point that 95% of the time, Walgreen's isn't even making the money it costs them to shelf them.

So Walgreen's has a choice -- it can take the loss, or make it up on those who have private medical insurance [well that hardly seems fair does it?]

Now you can't blame Walgreen's ... what business can stay viable if you are giving your stock away? Or if you have to over charge the good customers to pay for the one customer who steals from you [not the Medicare recipients, the State for not paying] .... no one would go there after a while, no one at all - because the doors would be locked.

But they are NOT the only ones doing it there .... Bartell Drugs did the same thing last month ... Ritzville Drugs has also announced it will stop participation, Meyer & Safeway are complaining about the reimbursment policies too but they will continue for a while until they see what happens.

The state's head of the program has said simply "We have plenty of other businesses that will fill the prescriptions" [paraphrased] .... BUT if you have ever been in a small town, often times there is just one or two drug stores, and only one of those might have an actual pharmacy.

I would imagine that in many of the small towns in WA the story is much the same -- one local small town pharmacy and then you have to travel to the next largest city to get to the next one.

If you are elderly, or can't afford a car -- you are SOL ... what are they to do then?

Look - I know the state wants to save money ... all states are hurting for income right now ... but do they have to do it at the cost of businesses? do they have to undercut these companies at such a horrid rate?

Get ready though --- this is what its going to be like across America very very soon.

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