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New Consumer Survey Finds Overwhelming Satisfaction with Pharmacy Benefits

WASHINGTON, Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new national survey shows that consumers are highly satisfied with their prescription drug benefits and the variety of drugs and drugstores they provide, the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) said today. The survey also found that consumers care most about holding down costs and are extremely skeptical of proposals that would protect drugstores but raise prescription drug costs.

"While there is always more that can be done, consumers appreciate the savings and access that pharmacy benefit managers deliver," said PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt. "Likewise, consumers are unwilling to pay more in order to protect the financial interests of drugstores. For example, 84% are unwilling to pay higher premiums in order to add more drugstores to their networks."

Topline results of the national survey of consumers with prescription drug benefits include:

Click here to read the survey.

  1. Insured adults are overwhelmingly satisfied with their current prescription drug coverage, including covered drugs and access to stores. These adults are satisfied with their coverage by an 89 to 8 percent margin, saying they have access to a wide variety of drugs by an 83 to 8 percent margin and have access to a wide variety of drug stores by an 87 to 8 percent margin. Medicare enrollees with prescription drug benefits are satisfied by an 87 to 9 percent margin.
  2. Cost savings trump wider drug store and prescription drug access. Asked which objective is most important for their prescription drug plan, 56 percent say "holding down premiums and other out-of-pocket costs," 18 percent say "access to every brand-name prescription drug," and 17 percent say "access to every drug store in [their] area."
  3. More than four-fifths of insured adults are unwilling to pay higher premiums to gain access to more drug stores. Just 12 percent of these respondents would be willing to pay a higher premium if their drug plan added more drug stores to its network, while 84 percent would not be willing to pay more.
  4. Respondents who have tried mail service delivery of prescription drugs for ongoing conditions are satisfied with the service by more than a six-to-one margin. Among the 31 percent of insured adults who have tried mail service delivery, 89 percent are satisfied with the service and 10 percent are dissatisfied.
  5. More than two-thirds of insured adults want drug plans to reduce costs for consumers. Those polled agree that "prescription drug plans should try to reduce prescription drug costs for consumers as much as possible, even if it means drug stores make less money," rather than "prescription drug plans should protect drug stores' ability to make money, even if it raises prescription drug costs, because they are a vital business in many communities," by a 70 to 19 percent margin.

PCMA represents the nation's pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), which improve affordability and quality of care through the use of electronic prescribing (e-prescribing), generic alternatives, mail-service pharmacies, and other innovative tools for 200-plus million Americans.

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SOURCE Pharmaceutical Care Management Association
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