For the independent pharmacy, generic drug costs have gone up  as high as 30 percent and the pharmacy cannot price match big chain drug stores as regulations do not permit that to happen.   In reading this article further the pharmacy said they break even on 17% of the prescriptions and over 7 percent were done at a loss.  This same story is repeating itself all across the country with independent pharmacies as the price of a drug goes up in a day or two but the insurance reimbursement stays the same.  That’s a huge problem to say the least and even with an appeal, retroactive reimbursements are like almost zero. 

This pharmacy has been around since 1966 and the owner said it was time to sell out as he too as a pharmacist,image just like doctors are buried in red tape and can’t keep up with all the complexities demanded from the profiteering health insurance companies.  The new CVS store down the street when it opens has an immediate 7000 customers that need prescriptions, sounds like a marketing plan to me.  I just wonder if Walgreens was in there bidding for this too.  It’s so competitive.  As a matter of fact in some areas of the country people are upset over where CVS is moving in like a bull dozer and wants a “specific” location, can’t be a block away or down the street as their stats show exactly where they need to be for foot traffic I assume.

Communities and Cities Rebelling Against Chosen Locations of New CVS Stores Across the US…

Smaller independent pharmacies have been actually struggling for years but now it’s much worse.  When you look at what’s going on with Pharmacy Benefit Management, and look at this from United for an example, they can easily put a pharmacy out of business or dump out of network with a few algorithms. 

Walgreens Enters Contract and Investment With Amerisource Bergen for Drug Purchases and Distribution, Using Global Interests to Flex Pricing Muscles–independent Pharmacies Concerned

Independent pharmacies are already being hit over the head with “medication compliance” scoring.  Yes this is the over use and abuse of the “Scoring of America” here thinking that taking medications can be completely quantified and it can’t.  Some pharmacists are already getting lists of patients that have 5 star ratings next to their names and the job of the pharmacists are to “change behavior” more so than filling prescriptions. image We all appreciate and want the advice of pharmacists and they do a good job of it over all but to have to resort to having a starred system is ridiculous and we have non other to thank than CMS for their virtual beliefs that 5 star rating systems work everywhere.  I don’t have an issue with reminders to take medications, etc. but it’s the God awful data mining and money making “scoring” that’s the issue.  Myself I can use Outlook if I need reminders, etc. but the apps out there go beyond such and mine and take your data for the most part. 

CMS has been mentored way too long by United Healthcare for their models in thinking that “scoring” is the way to solve all issues.  It’s not, but it is a huge way for them and others to create these scores and sell them for money.  That’s what’s really going on here.  You can read about the money making FICO medication “scoring” in the fact that they tout that all they need is a name and an address to score anyone.  So where are they getting their data?  We don’t know exactly as its proprietary and they take in stuff from data brokers, social web sites and more I understand to create these money making scores.  Here’s more on the FICO Medication adherence scoring (which is a big secret that you can’t know about or get those numbers) and also keep in mind Optum is doing the same thing and has been for years (subsidiary of United Healthcare) as they tie all this data mining software right into the drug store and pharmacy benefit management systems. 

FICO Medication Adherence Scoring Should Be Banned As It’s Quantitated Justifications for Profit That Hurts US Consumers Using Proprietary Algorithms That Cannot Be Replicated For Accuracy or Audited

Then of course there’s big old IMS, the huge healthcare data broker making money hand over fist and last year they filed for an IPO and bought up some other data broker companies who buy and sell healthcare data.   The problem here is that your independent pharmacy has little or no interest in selling your data, but the big chains do and both CVS and Walgreens each make 1 to 2 billion a year selling your data. 

Need Any More Proof That Data Selling is An Epidemic Out of Control IMS Health Files for an IPO And Holds 85% of the World’s Prescription Data

I think we should all start demanding to know what our funky data flawed medication adherence score is, don’t you?  I’m already on a list in error of people that take blood thinners and get calls and it makes me mad as I have never prescribed any or taken any, so there goes the absolute crap quality of these so called “medication adherence” scores.  It’s all about making money.

independent Pharmacies Not Able to Compete with Big Chains and Fear Going Out of Business–They Don’t Have Same High Levels of Data To Sell to Profit- Attack of the Killer Algorithms Chapter 23

These folks are dead serious about the money on this and you can read the link below and former head of Medicare,image Nancy DeParle sits on the CVS board making money.  She was also the chief in charge of creating the Affordable Care Act and boy did she blow it in many area, but she doesn’t care now and a couple years ago did this great interview after leaving the White House where she said “private equity is more fun”…great stuff, right?

CVS to Share More Medication Adherence Love With New Contracts–Will Have More Data to Sell…

As a matter of fact, CVS couldn’t decide where the best e-commerce (which is really data mining algorithms) could be created so they opened not one, not two but three centers to reach into the brains of data scientists and coders alike to get the best code and user interface to entice you to give them more data, both in selling prescription services and other items.  You can read more about that the link below.  They also just bought Omnicare, the company that was in trouble for many years for over dosing seniors with medications with home infusions.  Omnicare and J&J paid big fines on that end of the stick.

CVS to Open New E-Commerce Technology Centers in Boston, New York and Palo Alto– Need “New Code” to Make Bigger Profits While They And Others Continue to Destroy “US Consumer Dignity” With the Exploitations…

Having this income from the data was so important to their profits that when Apple Pay came out, they opted out as they would lose the capability to capture all of it.  So there you go…

CVS and Rite Aid To Stop Using Apple Pay and “Yes” It Circles Right Back To Corporations and Banks Making Money Selling And Collecting Data and Offering Ad Exposure..What Else?

Also worth noting if you live in rural areas CVS can smack you with some higher co-pays too if you are part of their Care-Mark PBM too if you go to Walgreens or Wal-Mart to fill your prescription.  It’s their stupid “smoking” thing which has been all marketing.  If in a rural area and Wal-Mart as an example is the game in town to fill prescriptions, you take a hit for that.  It’s not as bad in city area but this is pretty stupid over all and just hurts consumers, just because of where they live.  You will drive to not get hit with a bigger co-pay in rural areas.  That’s the penalty for CVS not having youimager data to sell, nothing to do with cigarettes in reality. 

CVS To Charge Consumers Higher Co-Pays With Prescriptions Filled at Drug Stores That Still Sell Tobacco Products–Killer Algorithms Attacking Once Again To Make Sure CVS Gets the Prescription Revenue And Your Data To Score And Sell

So we say good bye to another good neighborhood friend here, the independent pharmacy who’s being ramrodded out business due to the complexities and corporate algorithmic processes related to data selling and making profits.  In addition, the employees from the Independent Drug Stores also now have the CVS Wellness program to deal with, and there’s a lawsuit working on that end as well.  Hope they do ok as it won’t be the same as now instead of employees they become “human capital” property of CVS for the pleasure of working there.   BD 

CVS Faces Lawsuit Filed By Employee Over Privacy Violations And Charging a $600 Fine For Non Participation In Wellness Program - The Term “Human Capital” Should Absolutely Be Abolished As Well Anymore..

Come July, though, Hagen and thousands of other area customers won't be picking up prescriptions from the nearly 50-year-old family-owned pharmacy.

After being approached by national chains for years, Michael and Tammy Bouckaert decided to sell the pharmacy side of their business to the new CVS Pharmacy being built a mile east at Midland Road and Euclid Avenue.

Pointing to stiff competition from several national pharmacy chains that now surround his business and changes to health insurance regulations that make it tough for independent pharmacies to turn a profit on prescription drugs, Michael Bouckaert said it was time to take the deal.

On July 11, files from the estimated 7,000 pharmacy customers are to be transferred to the new CVS Pharmacy. If customers don't change their preferred pharmacy with their healthcare providers, all prescriptions will automatically go to the new CVS, Bouckaert said.


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