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Prescription delivery services have taken off in the last decade, offering seniors worry-free medication management solutions. With these services, medications come presorted in a perforated roll of small plastic pouches, carefully labeled with the contents and the date and time each should be taken. Such services are a vast improvement over the multi-compartment plastic pillboxes that most seniors are familiar with. For many seniors, it’s time to embrace this change. A 2015-2016 survey found that 34.5% of those ages 60-79 in the U.S. had used five or more different prescription drugs in the past 30 days, indicating that they have complex regimens that a prescription delivery service could help with. 

According to the FDA, medication plans are not adhered to (followed) a shocking 50% of the time in the general population. The aforementioned complexity of many seniors’ medication routines is a huge hindrance to good adherence for many, but factors like transportation needs can also contribute to poor adherence. Using a prescription delivery service can eliminate the need for most trips to the pharmacy. This helps both the seniors who take the medication and the caregivers who help them. Reducing caregiver stress is an important goal, given the high levels of physical and mental burnout among those who care for older adults.

Despite all the potential benefits that a prescription delivery service offers, many seniors and caregivers don’t know how to begin making the switch. The majority of the companies that offer this service are not household names, and most patients have only ever used a local retail pharmacy. Thankfully, it’s not too difficult to overcome these and other barriers to making the change. Below you can find information on the best prescription delivery companies on the market, and you can also learn all about how to pick the best company to meet your needs.  

The Basics of Using Prescription Delivery Services

Prescription Delivery Basics

Before looking at the best companies, you’ll want to briefly review a few relevant terms and concepts in the pharmacy industry. The following information will help you understand what these services can and can’t do.

Typical Contents of a Prescription Delivery Service Box


What’s usually in the box...


-30 days of presorted prescription and/or over-the-counter (OTC) maintenance* medications
-As-needed medications in separate bottles
-Syrups, insulin, syringes, test strips, creams, eye-drops, or other non-pill items
-A cold pack (if needed)
-A printed medication list
-Any required drug safety information


What usually NOT in the box...


-Highly regulated Schedule II drugs
-Compounded medications
-Childsafe packaging
-90-day refills of medications
-Medications that you need right away


*Note: Maintenance medication is a common term that just means any medications that need to be taken daily on a long-term basis. 

The above description of what can and can’t be included in a prescription delivery box is general; some companies will choose to exclude other items for cost or liability reasons. Some will also not ship to certain areas or will put other limits on their service. One extremely common service limit is that some companies will not put an over-the-counter item in your presorted medications unless your doctor agrees to write a prescription for it. It’s strange to need a prescription for an inherently non-prescription item, but most doctors will be happy to help as long as the item is truly advisable for your health.

How Prescription Delivery Service Coverage Works

Presorted packaging, shipping, associated mobile apps, and consultations with pharmacists are usually all complimentary. You’ll still have copays as you would at any pharmacy. Your insurance company and/or the Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) that your insurance uses will determine copay amounts. Insurance or the PBM may limit which companies you can use. 

How We Selected the Top Prescription Delivery Services 

Pre-Sorted Medications

Mail-order pharmacies have multiplied in the United States thanks primarily to the internet. Very few of the available mail-order pharmacies offer medications that are pre-sorted in easy-open packets, though. We looked at many online pharmacies in order to find you the most reputable ones that offer this uncommon but life-changing service. 

Coverage Options

We crafted our list to include a range of options for both insured and uninsured/underinsured patients. All companies on our list have active contracts with the majority of major health insurers, though many have one or two companies that they don’t currently contract with. We avoided brands that didn’t emphasize cooperation with insurance. 

Widespread Service 

Many pharmacies across the nation offer pre-sorted medications on a strictly local or regional basis. The machines that package these medications are expensive but still within reach for some small pharmacies. However, since our readers come from all over the United States, we have only included companies on our list that have the staff and resources to serve seniors in all or most states.

The 6 Best Prescription Delivery Services of 2021



Notable Service Limits


Notable Coverage Exclusions*


Shipping Service Limits


Serves Patients Who
Lack Drug Coverage?


App Availability


24/7 Support


DivvyDOSE 


-Unusual 28-day billing
cycle only
-Some OTCs require a
prescription


-Humana Plans
-LI NET (Medicare/ CMS program)


Maryland


No


Apple


Yes


Simple Meds 


OTCs require prescription


Express Scripts Plans


None


Yes


None


No


ExactCare


None


-Humana Medicare Plans
-VA Plans

None


Yes


Apple and Android


No


CVS SimpleDose


OTCs require prescription


None


Some regional limits,
call for details 


Yes


Apple and Android


Varies by location


Accupac


None


-Humana
-United Healthcare
-OptumRX (PBM)


15+ state exclusions


Yes


Apple and Android 




No


Pillpack 


None


Many Medicaid plans


Hawaii


Yes


Apple 


No


*Note: Insurance companies and their PBMs can change their networks rapidly. The provided information on coverage exclusions is based on each pharmacy’s disclosure of what plans they have contracts with. Other exclusions, particularly of very small insurance companies, may also exist.

DivvyDOSE

Best Customer Service

DivvyDose is a full-service pharmacy that’s been delivering pre-sorted medications to seniors’ doors since 2014. Arvind Movva, a medical entrepreneur and a second-generation physician, founded the company in Moline, Illinois. A relatively small business that’s privately-held, this brand offers an unusually high quality of customer service. It’s known for its efficiency and its passion for helping patients. From its 24/7 phone line to its “double your out-of-pocket costs” refund policy for anyone who is unhappy,  DivvyDOSE constantly demonstrates its commitment to putting patients first.

Overview of DivvyDOSE Services


Notable Service Limits 


-Unusual 28-day billing cycle only
-Some OTCs require a prescription


Notable Coverage Exclusions


-Humana Customers
-LI NET (Medicare/CMS program)


Shipping Service Limits


Maryland


Serves Uninsured Patients 


No


24/7 Support


Yes


App Availability


Apple


The Pros and Cons of Using DivvyDOSE’s Prescription Delivery Service

Pros

  • Refunds: DivvyDOSE offers an extremely unusual refund policy. If you’re unhappy with the service within the first 30 days, you can get double your out-of-pocket costs back from the company. The service itself (packaging, shipping, etc.) is free, but your out-of-pocket costs would include copays and any OTC items that you added to your order that your insurance doesn’t cover. This policy demonstrates that the company has a high level of confidence in its own ability to please its customers.
  • NABP Accredited: DivvyDOSE is accredited with the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), an organization that’s been helping pharmacies maintain the highest quality standards since 1904. This membership speaks to the quality of the DivvyDOSE business model. 

Cons

  • Billing Cycle: This brand uses an unusual 28-day billing cycle, as opposed to the 30-day cycle used by most retail pharmacies and companies on our list. The practical implication of this is that you may have one more copay per year than you otherwise would. 
  • Exclusions: Online under its “Pricing” tab, DivvyDOSE says that it accepts “all major health insurance plans.” However, a call to the company reveals that the major insurer Humana does not have a coverage contract with DivvyDOSE. Moreover, DivvyDOSE does not work with uninsured patients, patients who have Medicare’s Limited Income NET Program (LI NET) prescription drug benefit, or patients who live in Maryland. 
  • App Limits: DivvyDOSE has a great app, but it’s currently only offered for Apple (iOS) phones. Android users will need to make calls or use email in order to make changes to their account

Simple Meds

Best Small Prescription Delivery Business

Simple Meds is a small but influential pharmacy located in the heart of Indiana. This pharmacy was founded by the Hogan family which also owns a senior home care business in Nebraska. Since its start in 2015, this company has always focused on maintaining close contact with customers through monthly phone check-ins. The onboarding process for patients is similarly personable, with staff assisting customers over the phone rather than through an online application. With its highly trained staff of fewer than about 30 employees, Simple Meds serves each customer with a superior level of industry knowledge and personable communication. 

Overview of Simple Meds Services


Notable Service Limits


OTCs always require a prescription


Notable Coverage Exclusions


Express Scripts


Shipping Service Limits


None


Serves Uninsured Patients? 


Yes


24/7 Support


No


App Availability


None


The Pros and Cons of Using Simple Meds’ Prescription Delivery Service

Pros

  • Monthly Review: Simple Meds pharmacists are diligent about making sure that customer’s boxes are correct. They reach out to patients monthly to check in on how the service is working and if any prescriptions need to be updated. This level of service isn’t universal in the market, so patients who like personal service will appreciate the contact. 
  • 50 States Serviced: Even companies that have a large distribution sometimes exclude one or two states. Shipping costs or licensing complications can be difficult to overcome, so it’s amazing that Simple Meds ships to all 50 states despite being one of the smaller pharmacies on our list. 
  • Medication Lists: Simple Meds is a company that tends to prioritize person-to-person communication over technology-based solutions, but this brand still knows how to incorporate technology when it really counts. Simple Meds has decided to incorporate a convenient video link on its printed medication lists each month. Those with smartphones and the appropriate barcode scanner apps can access a video that explains medications and provides critical care details. 

Cons

  • OTC Ordering: Simple Meds absolutely always requires a prescription for each item included in their packets, regardless of whether or not the item is just an over-the-counter vitamin, allergy pill, or something similar. Having a prescription allows the company to protect itself from liability, and it also may help with the company’s billing process.
  • PBM Exclusion: Unfortunately, one of the three largest PBMs, Express Scripts, currently has no contract with Simple Meds. This is not necessarily unusual, as Express Scripts has been known to abruptly drop similar companies in the past. However, the lack of a contract with Express Scripts could be a problem for anyone who’s a member of any Cigna health plans.
  • No App: Simple Meds does not offer an app on any platform. Typical medication management apps can send caregivers and seniors reminders to take their pill pouches. Apps can also be a convenient place to store information on medications, and they can often be used to make changes to accounts or to make payments. It’s definitely a disadvantage to not have any of these convenience features with Simple Meds, but the company’s customer service is generally easy to contact during normal business hours. 

ExactCare

Most Experience with Medication Management

Led by CEO and Founder Dale M. Wollschleger, ExactCare is a large healthcare company with fulfillment centers in both Dallas, Texas and Cleveland, Ohio. The company’s business model is flexible, serving patients directly in their homes but also offering medication management solutions to hospitals and other large healthcare settings. ExactCare is well-known for helping other healthcare companies reduce their costs and improve patient health outcomes. The company succeeds thanks to its highly skilled corporate team and its roughly 500 employees. Founded in 2009, ExactCare stands out as the company on our list that has been offering pre-sorted medications and other complex medication management services the longest. 

Overview of ExactCare Services


Notable Service Limits


None


Notable Coverage Exclusions


-Humana Medicare Plans
-VA Plans


Shipping Service Limits


None


Serves Uninsured Patients? 


Yes


24/7 Support?


No


App Availability


Apple and Android


The Pros and Cons of Using ExactCare’s Prescription Delivery Service

Pros

  • High-Touch: ExactCare operates as a “high-touch” pharmacy. This means that rather than just shipping items to customers, it can also schedule visits with customers in their homes or otherwise provide very thorough consultations over the phone. The optional in-home visits can be great in situations where explaining things over the phone takes too long. ExactCare employees look for potential hazardous medication interactions, and they also assist patients with calls to doctors and other pharmacies. 
  • Responsive: This company actively responds to reviews online. It provides clarification on services and it provides a number where the patient can call and get real help. Online review spots like the ExactCare Google Business profile tend to have many reviews of people expressing frustration over technical issues, but it’s encouraging that ExactCare takes the time to address concerns. 
  • App Access: ExactCare offers its app, “MyECP,” for both Apple and Android phones. Many brands on our list are available on one or the other platform, not both. Some companies don’t offer any app at all. ExactCare goes above and beyond with its mobile options. Users can also log on to MyECP using a regular web browser. 

Cons

  • Complaints: ExactCare, being one of the largest companies on our list, has an unusually high number of online reviews compared to most companies in the same market. Unfortunately, many mention customer issues with prescription transfers, late shipments, and more. Positive reviews are also plentiful, however.

CVS SimpleDose

Best Rewards Program

The CVS brand has been providing pharmacy services to Americans for over fifty years, and it’s been offering its SimpleDose program for over five years. Many seniors already use and trust one of roughly 6,200 CVS locations that are spread across all fifty states plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. With over 2.5 billion prescriptions being filled or managed by this company, CVS has an incredible amount of experience helping patients. Aside from its very reliable service and long history, CVS is a popular choice due to the loyalty program that it offers. CVS is the only brand that actually gives store credits back as a reward for patients filling prescriptions. 


Notable Service Limits 


Presorted OTCs always require a prescription*


Notable Coverage Exclusions


None


Shipping Service Limits


Some regional limits, call for details 


Serves Uninsured Patients? 


Yes


24/7 Support


Varies by state and location


App Availability


Apple and Android


*When included in pill pouches. OTC items may be available without prescriptions if shipped in a separate bottle.

The Pros and Cons of Using CVS SimpleDose’s Prescription Delivery Service

Pros

  • Local Contacts: CVS may be a large corporation, but the fact that it has stores in so many neighborhoods means that it’s easy to develop a personal connection with staff. Many seniors already personally know their local CVS pharmacists. For seniors who already know CVS staff, it can be great to have the option of calling or stopping by the local branch for advice or to have any problems corrected.
  • Adjustable Payment Dates: When you get SimpleDose packs, you must pay all of your separate copays for included medications at the same time. However, you have complete freedom to set your billing date for when it’s most financially convenient for you. Not all companies offer such flexibility.

Cons

  • Delivery Limits: Home delivery of SimpleDose boxes isn’t available in every town. In cases where you can’t get home delivery, you can opt to pick up your SimpleDose box in a local store, and for most seniors, this is still a great option. However, CVS closed 75 stores in 2020. These closures, combined with the limits on some home deliveries, could mean that not all seniors will be able to benefit from this service.
  • Rewards Enrollment: The CVS rewards program is amazing, providing up to $50 in prescription rewards that can be spent at a local CVS each year. However, the enrollment process for rewards is not intuitive. A store associate may be able to help, but the fact that you must enroll in not only the regular ExtraCare program but also the separate ExtraCare Pharmacy & Health Rewards program makes the whole process a little daunting.

Accupac 

Most Transparent Safety Policies 

Accupac is a special division of Accuserv Pharmacy which has been operating in Irwin, Pennsylvania since 1993.  Accuserv, a specialty pharmacy, helps patients manage uncommon or especially severe chronic diseases and conditions. The Accupac presorted medication pouches that Accuserv began offering in 2015 can be seen as a natural next step for this brand that was already invested in helping people with complex medication management. Accupac takes its responsibility to its customers extremely seriously. Online, customers can read about how Accupac uses a twelve-point electronic verification system, numerous pharmacist checks within the process, and numbered pill pouches to keep patients safe. 

Overview of Accupac* Prescription Delivery Services


Notable Service Limits


None


Notable Coverage Exclusions


-Humana
-United Healthcare
-OptumRx


Shipping Service Limits


15+ states excluded


Serves Uninsured Patients? 


Yes


24/7 Support


No


App Availability


Apple and Android 


*Note: Accupac is also the name of an unrelated cosmetics packaging company, also based in Pennsylvania. Internet searches for Accupac can turn up information on the wrong company.

The Pros and Cons of Using Accupac’s Prescription Delivery Service

Pros

  • Truly Full-Service: Accupac can include virtually any medication or medical supply in the same box that they ship your roll of presorted medications in. It’s refreshing to find a company that’s so easily able to accommodate customer needs. Note that compounded and highly regulated medications are still excluded in most cases.
  • Helpful Website: Accupac’s website includes answers to many common questions, featuring an easy-to-read and generally helpful FAQ section. To access this section, go to the Accupac homepage, scroll all the way to the bottom of the page, and click the word Questions under the Help section. Elsewhere on the website, visitors can find helpful visuals and a video that explains the system. 

Cons

  • Hours: This brand does not offer a 24/7 phone line, and it has limited weekend hours (partial Saturday hours, no Sunday hours). Customers can leave a message outside of normal hours and they will get a call-back, but it will likely not be immediate. The lack of robust hours is somewhat mitigated by the fact that customers can access their accounts via mobile apps. 
  • Transparency: The Accupac website has some transparency issues due to its lack of specifics on both insurance and shipping. The website can give the impression that anyone can be an Accupac customer, but in reality, Accupac cannot ship to over 15 different states due to not being licensed in those states. It also doesn’t have contracts with Humana, United HealthCare, and the PBM OptumRx. While the website isn’t completely transparent, the pharmacists at this pharmacy are very happy to provide details specific to you if you call.  

PillPack

Best for Insurance Compatibility

T. J. Parker and Elliot Cohen founded PillPack in 2013 in Manchester, New Hampshire. Although not the first company to offer presorted medications, PillPack has become the most well-known. As PillPack has become more and more successful, it has attracted the attention of larger businesses. In 2018 Amazon acquired it for $753 million, so PillPack is now officially called “PillPack by Amazon Pharmacy.” Part of PillPack’s popularity may be attributable to the fact that it is accessible and affordable for most people. The company works with all the major PBMs and insurance companies, and the only coverage exceptions that it lists on its website are some Medicaid plans. Chances are extremely good that your insurance will be able to provide coverage for PillPack. 

Overview of PillPack Prescription Delivery Services


Notable Service Limits


None


Notable Coverage Exclusions


Many Medicaid plans


Shipping Service Limits


No shipping to Hawaii


Serves Uninsured Patients? 


Yes


24/7 Support


No*


App Availability


Apple


*Note: For urgent matters during evening hours, you can leave a voicemail and expect a callback within 30 minutes. 

The Pros and Cons of Using PillPack’s Prescription Delivery Services

Pros

  • Website: It’s evident that PillPack has put considerable effort into making an informative website. By clicking Help on the upper right-hand corner of the website, you’ll be taken to a page with a search bar and links to numerous explanatory articles. For seniors who like to do their homework on a company, the Help section is a great place to start. 
  • Copay Notifications: If you experience a sudden copay change that makes your prescription significantly more expensive, PillPack will reach out to you and will delay your bill slightly to allow you to contact your insurance. Note that PillPack won’t necessarily engage with insurance on your behalf to question prices. 

Cons

  • Competitor Relations: PillPack has made headlines numerous times for its contentious relationship with other pharmacies. Competing retail pharmacies have accused the company of a variety of bad business practices, including trying to transfer prescriptions without proper patient authorization. In the past, some retail pharmacies considered it acceptable to just ignore transfer requests from PillPack. Local pharmacies may be more willing to work with PillPack now, but previously there were some serious conflicts and even lawsuits. 

How to Select and Use a Prescription Delivery Service 

How to Select and Use a Prescription Delivery Service

If you’ve determined that you’re a good candidate for presorted medication services, then it’s time to dive deeper into how signing up works, how to pick the best company, and how to thrive with your new medication routine.  

Step 1: Understand the Role of Each Responsible Party

Getting a prescription transferred and filled with a prescription delivery service requires the cooperation of numerous players in the healthcare system. Below you can explore the responsibilities of each person or organization during the transfer process. Note that there can be slight variations, but in general the following “job descriptions” are accurate. This information refers primarily to the transfer process, but some responsibilities will be ongoing. 

Prescription Delivery Service Responsibilities: 

  • Reach out to doctors, other pharmacies, insurance companies, and PBMs in order to coordinate the transfer of all relevant prescriptions 
  • Inform patients of changes to copays, coverage difficulties, or delays with transferring or synching up refills 
  • Answer patient questions and inform the patient of legal obligations, fees, or any other relevant information

Insurance Company Responsibilities:

  • Provide prescription coverage (amount varies, some insurance offers no drug coverage)
  • Communicate with the patient and with the prescription delivery service when requested

Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) Responsibilities:

  • Create a formulary that determines which medications are covered by insurance
  • Negotiate drug prices with manufacturers
  • Determine your copays 
  • Cooperate with the prescription delivery service when requested

Retail Pharmacy Responsibilities:

  • Promptly transfer prescriptions upon receiving a request 
  • Retain and continue filling any prescriptions that cannot be filled by the prescription delivery service

Doctor Responsibilities: 

  • Write new prescriptions if the old pharmacy refuses to release a prescription (rare but possible)
  • Write new prescriptions for 30-day refills if the patient was previously using 90-day refills
  • Communicate with the prescription delivery service and patient as needed

Step 2: Make Your Provider Selection

Now that you understand the roles of all responsible parties in this industry, it’s time to select a prescription delivery service. There’s no perfect way to select a company, but the tips below will help you make an informed choice.

Tips for Narrowing Down Your Choices:

  • Coverage and Cost: Weed out any companies that your insurance considers out-of-network. Copays should be similar at most covered companies, but do ask about hidden fees such as shipping costs, just in case. If you’re going to get OTC items from the company, make sure the costs won’t be unusually high. Be aware that switching from 90-day to 30-day refills will cause a cost increase at any company.
  • Customer Service: Speak with someone in customer service over the phone. Ask how often the company will communicate with you, and about what. Ask what makes the company’s customer service special, and take notes regarding the answer. 
  • News and Reviews: Find out what customers complain about and what they like. Look into whether or not the company has made it into the news. Use this research to refine any questions you may have for customer service.
  • Apps: Look into any mobile apps that the company may offer as part of its service. Consider whether you’d like to use the app to set medication reminders, track deliveries, and more. 
  • Exclusions: Some companies exclude certain states or zip codes from their shipping service. Some also exclude certain important items or have somewhat irritating requirements such as getting prescriptions for over-the-counter items. Make sure none of these exclusions or stipulations is going to be a deal-breaker for you.

Step 3: Sign Up and Transfer Prescriptions 

When you sign up for a service, you’ll need to have all of your medical information in easy reach. Some companies will have you complete paperwork online, while others will help you with the process of signing up primarily over the phone. More rarely, some companies will send a representative to your home to help you sign up in person. In any case, it’s going to be the prescription delivery service’s responsibility to take all your information and then make numerous phone calls to get all of your prescriptions transferred. You shouldn’t have to do much other than provide the contact information and medication list.

Once the company has all of your prescriptions, it may take them some time to get them all synced up so that they can ship all maintenance medications in one 30-day roll of packets. During sign up, ask the company how long you’ll need to wait for your first box. Make sure you also ask if the company plans to get partial fills on some prescriptions in order to make the process easier. Each company treats the process a little differently. You’ll want to make sure that you have enough medication to get you by while you wait two or more weeks for your first full box.

Step 4: Practice Safe Patient Habits

Once you start getting your presorted medications, you can expect adhering to your prescribed regimen to be far easier than it was before. However, you’ll still need to follow a few simple guidelines to keep yourself and others safe.

  • Check for Errors: It’s important that you know what your pills look like and what dosage they should come in. Presorted pills are usually sorted by a machine and then checked by pharmacists for accuracy. Mistakes are unlikely but still possible, and they can be very harmful. If something looks wrong or is missing, call the company right away to figure out your next steps.
  • Report Symptoms: You may have changed to a pharmacy that isn’t local to you, but the pharmacists at the new company are still responsible for helping you understand your medications. If you develop a symptom that may be a medication side effect, don’t hesitate to call the service’s pharmacist for advice. If it’s an emergency, call 911. 
  • Store Correctly: By choosing pre-sorted medications delivery, you’re choosing to receive most or all of your prescription in a form that isn’t childsafe or pet-safe. Be diligent to get your box off your porch right away if that’s where it’s delivered. Keep your medications in a high, childsafe cabinet or lockbox, particularly if minors live in or visit your home. Additionally, make sure that your medications are kept at whatever temperature is required.

Why Do Seniors Find It Difficult to Adhere to Medication Plans?

If you’re a caregiver or family member, you may be baffled by your loved one’s seeming unwillingness to take all of his or her medications as prescribed. The reality is, there are some very good reasons that seniors struggle with adherence. Many seniors see multiple doctors, and this can result in communication failures between providers and the possibility of numerous prescriptions that may not even be compatible. Some seniors may feel their medications are “wrong” or just too complicated, but they may not have a plan for how to fix the problem. Moreover, any senior who struggles with vision, dexterity, or cognitive function will be further frustrated in their efforts to manage their own pills. Getting all medications synced up and reviewed for potential issues by a qualified pharmacist can help tremendously, and switching to presorted packets can help as well. 

What Is Medicare Part D and Will it Cover a Prescription Delivery Service?

Medicare Part D plans are the part of Medicare that offers prescription drug coverage. These plans are offered by private insurance companies but are designed to work with Original Medicare or with Medicare Advantage. They are highly regulated, and information on how they work can be found on the Medicare website. These drug coverage plans frequently have contracts with prescription delivery plans. If you have Part D, you can ask your plan about your options. You can also directly contact the prescription delivery service of your choice and ask them to look into your insurance coverage for you.

Why Did My Costs Go Up When I Switched to a Prescription Delivery Service?

If you had to switch from a 90-day to a 30-day refill plan, then that switch most likely triggered at least a small price increase for your prescriptions. 30-day refills are required for most prescription delivery services, but, per pill, they tend to cost more than “bulk” 90-day refills. Other possible reasons your price might have gone up include an unresolved issue with your insurance, a high price on an over-the-counter item that you added, or a hidden fee such as a shipping fee that you didn’t realize you’d be charged. Always call and ask for an explanation if you notice a price increase. 

Just How Automated Are Prescription Delivery Services?

It depends. Some companies in this market are highly reliant on sophisticated computer programs that handle everything from automatic refills, to bills, to dispensing. However, even companies that have a high level of automation in their system should still have humans double-checking orders and reaching out to patients with concerns or to verify any changes. Safety redundancies are vital in the pharmacy industry. If you’re curious about how automation affects dispensing accuracy, many companies will be willing to share more about their drug verification policies with you. 

Do Prescription Delivery Services Screen Medication Lists for Harmful Drug Interactions?

Your prescription delivery service should have a pharmacist that screens your medication list for harmful drug interactions when you sign up or when you get a new prescription. The company may also have a computer system that will flag potential issues. However, mistakes are still possible. Problems with drug interactions occur most often in situations where you have seen multiple doctors or when you have multiple chronic conditions. If you have a large number of medications, it’s a good idea to ask about how the company can help you with “reconciling” your medication and making changes where necessary in consultation with one or more of your doctors. 

Works Cited

  1. Hales, Craig; Servais, Jennifer, et al. “Prescription Drug Use Among Adults Aged 40–79 in the United States and Canada.” CDC, 14 August 2019, www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db347.htm. Accessed 8 August 2020. 
  2. “Why You Need to Take Your Medications as Prescribed or Instructed.” FDA, 16 February, 2016, www.fda.gov/drugs/special-features/why-you-need-take-your-medications-prescribed-or-instructed. Accessed 8 August 2020. 
  3. “Caregiving.” CDC, 25 November 2019, https://www.cdc.gov/aging/caregiving/index.htm. Accessed 8 August 2020.
  4. “Drug Scheduling,” DEA, https://www.dea.gov/drug-scheduling. Accessed 5 August 2020. 
  5. “Compounding and the FDA: Questions and Answers.” FDA, 21 June 2016,