New Prescription Plan

1 decade 2 years 3 weeks ago Sunday, November 26 2006 Nov 26, 2006 Sunday, November 26, 2006 9:48:15 PM CST November 26, 2006 in News

In a day and age when a brand name prescriptions can cost upward of $100, even with insurance the idea of a prescription is a welcomed notion. To most.

Customer's may have to weigh this low price with the convenience of a local pharmacy. Long lines and crowded parking lots are often what customers battle at a store like Walk-Mart.

"You know it's no different than a hometown restaurant versus a McDonald's," said owner Triston Brownfield. "I think you know, you know what you're going to get."

Brownfield says what you're going to get at Wal-Mart my be a cheap price but his local pharmacy offers more personal attention.

"We like to pride ourselves on the customer service that we can provide that you're not always going to be able to find in that type of environment," said Brownfield "Our location, ease of getting in and out, if you need something in a hurry you're not going to be waiting fighting, fighting just to get a parking spot."

Wal-Mart says since it started the $4 prescription plan about six weeks ago the parking lot has gotten even busier.

"I don't have specific sales numbers but the traffic's improved over here just based on the $4 script program," said Wal-Mart manager Craig Schaefer.

Traffic's improved enough locally that Wal-Mart accelerated the plan to offer $4 prescriptions around the U.S.

Wal-Mart originally started the $4 prescriptions in Tampa in September. Within a couple weeks it was offered statewide in Florida.

A couple weeks after that the $4 prescriptions were offered to 14 additional states.

Then in late October, Missouri along with 11 other states were added to the list. And just a few weeks ago, 11 more states were added.

That brings the total to 38 states offering the $4 prescription plan at Wal-Mart.

Customers KOMU spoke with said even though they may be able to refill their generic prescriptions for cheaper at Wal-Mart, they still prefer the customer service and convenience of a local pharmacy.

"If you want to go somewhere where you know you're going to have to stand in line to see a pharmacist that may not know you by name or do you want to go somewhere where they know you by name," said Brownfield "and they know what medicine's you're taking and they're always there for you?"

Brownfield says in the future, more and more customers will be on insurance plans so it will cost the same no matter where they get the prescription filled.

Other local pharmacies tell KOMU they haven't noticed a decline in prescriptions yet.

But they have had customer's coming in to get their name brand medicines and then going to Wal-Mart to get the cheaper generic prescriptions.

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