PBM Mail-Service

Many Americans rely on the mail-service pharmacies operated by pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) for convenience and value.

Having regularly needed medication(s) delivered by mail is more convenient and may promote adherence for patients with restricting health conditions or limited transportation. Better adherence and avoidance of acute care episodes can lead to improved health outcomes.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, mail-service pharmacy has helped Americans access their prescriptions without disruption.

Mail-service pharmacy is a convenient, reliable, and affordable option for patients to safely access prescription drugs.

Mail-service pharmacies ship hundreds of millions of prescriptions each year via the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) and other national mail carriers, including to individuals living with chronic conditions and those residing in underserved communities. Along with the convenience of mail, the benefits of mail-service pharmacy include higher rates of prescription adherence, improved health outcomes, cost savings from use of generic drugs, greater dispensing accuracy, and fewer medication errors (such as drug-to-drug interactions).

Mail-service pharmacies fill large quantities of prescriptions with 23x greater dispensing accuracy.

Computer-controlled quality processes, robotic dispensing, and advanced workflow practices allow mail-service pharmacies to fill large quantities of prescriptions with greater accuracy and reduce potential medication errors to zero in several of the most critical areas.

Mail-service pharmacies could save consumers, employers, and other health plan sponsors $59.6 billion over 10 years.

The full use of mail-service pharmacy may lead to savings of up to 1.2% on overall drug costs. Both the Department of Defense and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services found costs at mail-service pharmacies were less than retail, with savings of 16.7% for the TRICARE program and 16% in Medicare Part D. Also, based on a national survey of employer plan sponsors, the median mail-service pharmacy discount on brand drugs is 3-5 percentage points better.

savings on overall
drug costs

savings for
TRICARE program

savings in
Medicare Part D

Pharmacists and patient care advocates often are available 24/7 to provide confidential counseling.

Before mailing a prescription, mail-service pharmacies electronically review the patient’s medications to detect any potentially harmful adverse drug reactions — even when the patient uses several pharmacies. Pharmacists also provide clinical case management, patient education, and support to promote adherence and improved health outcomes.

A 21st Century Pharmacy

How does mail-service pharmacy work?

Once stabilized on the medication(s) filled by their local pharmacy, patients can choose to use a mail-service pharmacy for home delivery.