In order to keep the pharmaceutical cost down and to be still able to offer affordable health insurance in Brentwood, Anthem announced that beginning January 2012 prescriptions will be no longer filled at Wallgreens.
Accordingly to a report 2010 by the CDC the US National spending for prescription drugs was $234.1 billion in 2008, which was more than double what was spent in 1999.
Some of the key findings in this report were:
*Over the last 10 years, the percentage of Americans who took at least one prescription drug in the past month increased from 44% to 48%.
*The use of two or more drugs increased from 25% to 31%. The use of five or more drugs increased from 6% to 11%.
In 20072008, 1 out of every 5 children and 9 out of 10 older Americans reported using at least one prescription drug in the past month.
*The percentage of persons who used five or more prescription drugs increased from 6% in 1999 11% in 2008.
Among older Americans (aged 60 and over), more than 76% used two or more prescription drugs and 37% used five or more.
As expected the report noted that those who were without either a regular place for health care, health insurance, or prescription drug benefit had less prescription drug use compared with those who had these benefits. Additionally the report showed that women were more likely to use prescription drugs than men. Ethnicity played a role in prescription drug use as the non-Hispanic white population had the highest prescription drug use and the Mexican-American population had the lowest. The study is available online and can be seen at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db42.pdf
With the ever rising prescription drug useage and drug prices, it is important that all insurance carrier negotiate the best rates for their cusomer. Contrary to David Lazarus opinion, I think customer do not mind switching pharmacies as long as their prescription drug prices are still affordable, especially in urban settings where we have many pharmacies to choose from. When pharmaceutical cost are 25 % of the health insurance cost than it is important that all ways are being explored to save cost and offer affordable health insurance in Brentwood.