September 22, 2010

(Washington, DC)— Consumers with prescription drug coverage are highly satisfied with mail-service pharmacies, according to a new J.D. Power and Associates National Pharmacy Study, the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) said today.

“These data highlight that consumers are highly satisfied with the increased savings and convenience provided by mail-service pharmacies,” said PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt.

These findings dovetail with other government and independent research on the increased savings, safety, and adherence provided by mail-service pharmacies. That research includes:

  • The Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC concluded in a 2005 report that PBM-owned mail-order pharmacies offer lower prices on prescription drugs than retail pharmacies and are very effective at capitalizing on opportunities to dispense generic medications.
  • Pharmacotherapy: Official Journal of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy.Peer-reviewed data found that highly automated mail-service pharmacies dispensed prescriptions with 23-times greater accuracy than retail pharmacies. The mail-service error rate was zero in several of the most critical areas, including dispensing the correct drug, dosage, and dosage form.
  • American Journal of Managed Care. Consumers receiving their prescription medications for chronic conditions through a mail-service pharmacy “were more likely to take them as prescribed by their doctors than did patients who obtained them from a local pharmacy,” according to a recent study published in the American Journal of Managed Care. Key findings from UCLA and Kaiser Permanente’s Division of Research include:
    • 84.7 percent of patients who received their medications by mail at least two-thirds of the time stuck to their physician-prescribed regimen, versus 76.9 percent who picked up their medications at “brick and mortar” Kaiser Permanente pharmacies.
    • Mail-order pharmacy users were more likely than local pharmacy users to have a financial incentive to fill their prescriptions by mail (49.6 percent vs. 23.0 percent), and to live a greater distance away from a local pharmacy (8.0 miles vs. 6.7 miles).