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New Physicians Survey: Most Drugstores Lack the 'Expertise and Capability' to Provide Specialty Medications
Date:12/12/2013

WASHINGTON, Dec. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new national survey released today by the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) finds physicians are highly satisfied with their specialty pharmacies, but are skeptical that most drugstores have the "expertise and capability" to provide the same medications to patients.  Only 5 percent believe "all" drugstores are qualified to do so, according to the survey. 

Some state legislatures are considering new "Any Willing Specialty Pharmacy" mandates that would force employers to contract with any drugstore that wants to dispense complex specialty medications, regardless of its qualifications.  This has been a top legislative priority of the drugstore lobby.

"When it comes to providing drug benefits to those with chronic illnesses, patient safety is the top priority.  It's wrong to make employer and union health plans contract with drugstores that may not be qualified to dispense complex biologic medicines," said PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt.

North Star Opinion Research conducted the national survey of 500 physicians in the rheumatology, nephrology, infectious disease, oncology, and neurology specialties who prescribe specialty medications.  Detailed results from the survey are below (and here):

  1. Specialists say their patients already have access to specialty medications from a variety of sources.  Thirty percent say their patients typically get their specialty medications from a specialty pharmacy, compared to 21 percent from a drugstore, 10 percent from a doctor's office or practice, 8 percent from an outpatient clinic and 6 percent from a mail service pharmacy, with 22 percent saying patients get their medications from a combination of sources.
  2. Only five percent of the specialists who work with specialty pharmacies believe th
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SOURCE Pharmaceutical Care Management Association
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