Maine Center for Elder Law Blog

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Discount Drug Plans May Not Be Saving Medicare Money

Preferred-pharmacy plans that promise lower prices for people who agree to buy theirprescription drugs from certain stores may be costing the U.S. Medicare program more money to support, pharmacists said.

While Medicare patients get reduced co-payments in the plans, offered by companies including UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH)and Humana Inc. (HUM), the insurers are shifting the burden of those discounts onto the federal government, according to an analysis today by the National Community Pharmacists Association. The agency that runs Medicare told insurers in a Feb. 15 letter that it has begun to scrutinize the costs of preferred pharmacies.

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