Health & Safety

June 20, 2013

The cost of medicine

633rd Medical Operations Squadron

LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va.  — Service members can save money by filling prescriptions at a local military treatment facility, while also saving the government a significant amount of money.

According to statehealthfacts.org, an estimated 3.8 billion prescriptions were filled in the United States in 2011, costing Americans more than $271 billion. The total nears $300 billion when over-the-counter drug remedies are included.

“Costs to the Department of Defense to fill these prescriptions vary according to point of service, but the average cost of filling a 30-day prescription is $19.90 at a Military Treatment Facility, $32.89 with mail-order service and $72.11 at a retail pharmacy,” said Capt. Kellie Zentz, 633rd Medical Operations Squadron pharmacist at Langley Air Force Base, Va,. “When Service members fill prescriptions off base, more than $180 million of potential military revenue is lost to retail pharmacies in the Tidewater, Va., area.”

Patients using military pharmacies not only save the government money, but even in a 3-month period, personal savings can add up.

“When filling at a military pharmacy, patients receive 90-day prescriptions with no co-pay, and when using a mail-order pharmacy, co-pays for the same prescription range from $0 to $43,” said Zentz “When TRICARE is used on the same prescriptions at retail pharmacies, co-pays range from $15 to $132. With the national average of 12 prescriptions per person, this could save a patient up to $1584 every 90 days.”

Many Medical Group satellite pharmacies accept hard-copy prescriptions from outside physicians and are capable of filling refills on any prescription originally filled on base.

Another cost-effective option for Service members is the TRICARE Home Delivery service, said Zentz. The service is available when a pharmacy does not have a medication, or when members do not have access to a military pharmacy.

The delivery system is cost-effective for patients when filling generic medications, as they are filled and delivered at no cost. Also, patients may receive 90-day supplies of medications, while retail-pharmacy delivery systems often only offer the option of 30-day supplies.

To enroll in TRICARE Home Delivery patients must simply visit the website at http://www.TRICARE.mil/pharmacy.

To see the DoD Formulary and compare the cost of medications, use the formulary search tool at the DoD Pharmacoeconomic Center website at http://pec.ha.osd.mil

Medical costs are continuously on the rise, and with increased costs, TRICARE members see a growing value in using military benefits. To maximize those benefits, speak with civilian physicians about receiving paper prescriptions to bring to a military pharmacy, or for visit the TRICARE website for assistance with enrollment in home delivery system.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Maintenance versus repair … of our Airmen

LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. (AFNS) — This commentary is not about aircraft, vehicles, or even any mechanical components. It’s about our Airmen and how we manage their care and development throughout their careers. The maintenance versus repair concept is borrowed from the maintenance community and speaks to how maintenance managers plan, coordinate and...
 
 
DT_pict1

354th Bulldogs improve in-flight sight

A-10C Thunderbolt II pilots of the 354th Fighter Squadron Bulldogs began flying with a new helmet mounted integrated targeting system. The Scorpion Helmet Mounted Cueing System provides pilots with the ability to rapidly cue se...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Lynsie Nichols)

Your estimated wait time is…

Did you call the Enterprise Service Desk yesterday, but you’re still on hold today? The Communications Squadron will be uploading the Virtual Enterprise Service Desk application to computers base wide. 1st Lt. Brooke Leigh, ...
 

 

Face of Defense: Shooting victim seeks to inspire others

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON – An Army officer who was severely wounded in a shooting at Fort Hood, Texas, last year is using his near-death experience to give others a new lease on life. “I believe I was given a second chance,” said 1st Lt. John Arroyo, who is recovering at Brooke Army...
 
 
AFAS_pict

AFAS steps up with education programs

Education can be a key to succeeding in life, especially for military members looking to make the Air Force a career. The costs associated with getting an education are on the rise, but the Air Force Aid Society can help take s...
 
 
Fuel_pict

Exchange offers full-service refueling to drivers with disabilities

DALLAS – The Army & Air Force Exchange Service, with the support of U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth of Illinois, is adding a new system to gas stations on military installations worldwide to make it easier for drivers with dis...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin