The doctors in my hospital/clinic are not allowed to give out samples anymore.
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Samples were more plentiful before the Medicare D plans started, as a prescriber, I have had to switch client to other meds because the plan they joined decided (after a few months) that they were no longer covering a particular med. The alternative-arguing that this med is necessary (either by FAX or phone) is time consuming and frustrating and not always successful. I also agree with folks that suggest clients do need to have some investment in their recovery and treatment. Decisions around use of limited resources is not always a case of choosing meds over food, quite often it is recreational drugs or nicotine that depletes their budget.
Fitness Minutes: (396) Posts: 1,046 3/4/07 2:51 A
Boy can I relate to this. I work in the mental health field and constantly hear complaints about meds, bills ect. Sometimes I wonder what people want. In our state there is a $2.00 co-pay for medication for those on medicaid and we still hear about people not being able/choosing not to buy their meds. I wish that is all I had to pay. I had one person who asked us to help find a couch and we did but because it only cost $80 it was refused and we had to turn the money back in. I feel for alot of people but sometimes it's frustrating when you know poeple abuse the system.
Being a pharmacy intern, I totally understand the frustration. So many times patients don't understand the copay structure or why the drug isn't covered. All too often they blame the pharmacist (because we're right there) or the doctor, when it's really the insurance company's fault. The insurance company sets up the copay structure and decides what drugs are covered. We pharmacists have no control over this!! So many times I've wanted to tell the patients: "I only make money when you fill your prescription! Why would I try to force you to go elsewhere?"
I get frustrated by this because I know some of the patients can't afford their meds. The reps are leaving us fewer and fewer samples and giving coupons instead. I have resorted to sending patients to sites like www.pparx.org or checking out the generic drug program at WalMart if they can't afford their meds.
While I am not a doctor, I am a therapist/office manager working with three psychiatrist who all encounter the same problem. To add on to the fact that they feel we should provide all of their medicines, they do not pay their co-payments when they come in for appointments. These are also the folks who sometimes complain the most.
Fitness Minutes: (287,195) Posts: 10,912 3/1/07 12:04 A
I know medicines are very expensive now if you don't have health insurance, But it really bothers me when you give a patient samples for a couple of days and then they ask you why you can't give them the medicine for the whole time they need it, because the doctors are getting it free anyway. Then when you tell them that you really don't have any extra the get mad at you and say you just want to keep it for youself. And you try to explain that some medicines the drug reps only give you a limited quanity because they want the doctor to write scripts for the drug. Any body else experience anything like this or similar.
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