New public prescription drug program in Fulton County saving users money

Fulton County officials released third-quarter figures for the county’s prescription drug discoun


Fulton County officials released third-quarter figures for the county’s prescription drug discount card program Friday, which showed county residents using the card saved an average of 12 percent when purchasing brand-name drugs and 53 percent off generic prescriptions.

In January the Fulton County Board of Supervisors voted to partner with pharmacy benefit management company ProAct Inc., based in Liverpool, Onondaga County. Johnstown 4th Ward Supervisor James Callery, the vice chairman of county’s Health Services Committee, said he brought ProAct to the attention of the board after learning of the company from the New York State Association of Counties. He said every county resident can obtain a drug discount card through ProAct that will reduce the cost of drugs not covered by their medical insurance, if they have any. Residents without medical insurance can use the cards to get discounts on any prescription drugs.

“It’s been very successful and it doesn’t cost the county anything,” Callery said. “It works in every pharmacy, I don’t care if you’re talking Palmers, Rite Aide or CVS or Broadalbin Pharmacy. They all accept them. The pharmaceutical companies rebate the pharmacies … and it costs none of us anything.”

Broadalbin Supervisor Lee Hollenbeck said ProAct has wholesale deals with pharmaceutical companies and profits from a commission charge when residents use the card to make their drug purchases.

“People have been able to save money on drugs that aren’t normally covered on their insurance. I’ve had two or three people in Broadalbin thank us for doing this because of how much they saved,” Hollenbeck said.

From February through the end of October Fulton County residents filled 5,890 prescriptions using the ProAct cards saving a total of $104,000, or an average of $17.70 per prescription.

Callery said the program has helped encourage some of the retired leather industry workers in the city of Johnstown to buy prescriptions they otherwise couldn’t afford.

“They love it because they’re saving $20 to $40 every time they go into get their prescriptions, which they weren’t taking because they couldn’t afford them. So now they’re back taking their blood pressure medicine and things like that,” Callery said.

County officials encourage citizens interested in the program to call the ProAct help desk toll free at 1-877-776-2285.

Categories: Schenectady County

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