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“Gag Clauses”: Why Your Pharmacist Can’t Tell You that $20 Prescription Could Cost Only $8

Friday, March 2, 2018   (0 Comments)
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“Gag clauses” in insurance contracts are receiving state and national attention. This week at Minnesota Pharmacy Legislative Day, Rep. Matt Dean announced he would introduce a bill to address this negative practice in the Minnesota Legislature. A good overview of the issue appeared in the New York Times earlier this week.

From New York Times, Feb. 25: As consumers face rapidly rising drug costs, states across the country are moving to block “gag clauses” that prohibit pharmacists from telling customers that they could save money by paying cash for prescription drugs rather than using their health insurance.

Many pharmacists have expressed frustration about such provisions in their contracts with the powerful companies that manage drug benefits for insurers and employers. The clauses force the pharmacists to remain silent as, for example, a consumer pays $125 under her insurance plan for an influenza drug that would have cost $100 if purchased with cash. Read the full article.

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