Are Mail Order Pharmacies Practical

Millions of Medicare Part D beneficiaries have been asked to consider using the mail order pharmacy their Medicare prescription drug plan supports. There have been a lot of commercials about the benefits of using a mail order pharmacy. For those that are not used to the idea but interested, they have a lot of questions that should be addressed.

A mail order pharmacy is still a pharmacy. It’s just a pharmacy that mails the prescriptions to their customers. It is a pharmacy that is staffed to fit the needs of their business. When a Medicare beneficiary decides to use a mail order pharmacy, they are still going to receive their medications after it has been checked and approved by the pharmacist on duty. Mail order pharmacies work hard to ensure their customers are just as satisfied with their services as they are with their local pharmacies.

What are the Benefits?

There are a lot of benefits to using a mail order pharmacy. The benefits differ for many people but there is something that may appeal to everyone.

Mailed to Home: There are millions of Medicare beneficiaries that are dependent on someone for their basic care. Because they are dependent upon someone else, they may not be able to get to the pharmacy to get their medications in a timely fashion. With a mail order pharmacy, there is no need for concern. The medications a Medicare beneficiary has on file will be shipped to them, automatically or after an order has been placed.

Cheaper Pricing: Many mail order pharmacies offer discounts to those that use their services. They are often able to offer these lower prices because they send out medications in 60 or 90 day supplies. Many customers are surprised to find they can save more money over the course of the year, taking the same medications but having them filled through a mail order pharmacy.

Addressing the Scary Issues

As with anything good, there are some things that may not seem appealing about using a mail order pharmacy. There are some people that have had terrible experiences and others that assume certain things about the mail order pharmacy programs.

Lost or Late Medications: As with anything being shipped, there is always a slight chance a package can be lost in the mail. If a package has been lost in the mail, there are ways for the pharmacy to handle reissuing the medications to the Medicare beneficiary. Mail order pharmacies are aware of this chance and often give their customers a choice of shipping options.

In the event that a beneficiary doesn’t have their maintenance medications on auto-shipment and an order is not placed in time, their medications can arrive late. This is not something that is recommended for anyone to consistently do. When medications are prescribed, they should be taken as prescribed without interruption unless a doctor orders it. Most mail order pharmacies will give their customers the option of having reminders emailed, texted or called to them when it’s time to refill their medications. They also offer auto-shipping to avoid late shipments which could result in missed medication.

Ordering Difficulties: Not all Medicare beneficiaries are technologically savvy. There are some that have experienced difficulties ordering their medications. Most mail order pharmacies have many different ways to order medications. For those that don’t like the idea of getting online to order medications monthly, there is always a phone number to call. For those that don’t like the idea of getting on the phone, holding and speaking to a customer service agent, there is always the online option. Whenever there is a problem with ordering medications, a Medicare beneficiary should always speak up and let the company know about it.

There are millions of Medicare beneficiaries that would like to know more about mail order pharmacies. Each mail order pharmacy is different and has different things to offer. For more specific information, each beneficiary should call their Medicare Part D prescription drug plan provider to find out more.

Nov. 8 13'

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