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County OKs discount drug card proposal

POSTED: September 17, 2012 8:00 p.m.

Effingham County commissioners have approved an agreement to provide discount prescription cards to county residents.


In a 5-0 vote at their last meeting, commissioners agreed to a proposal from Financial Marketing Concepts, Inc., that would provide discount prescription cards to Effingham residents at no cost. The program is backed by the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia.


According to the ACCG, the Coast2Coast card offers up to 75 percent on retail prescriptions and, last year, card users saved an average of 55 percent. The discounts are in effect for name-brand and generic drugs and can be used for pet prescriptions, and there are discounts for family dental, vision and hearing and lab and imaging work, according to county human resources director Rushe Hudzinski-Sero.


“Anybody who wants to participate can participate and save money,” said county Commissioner Vera Jones. “I can’t see how that’s not a good thing.”


The program covers more than 60,000 name-brand and generic drugs and is good at more than 59,000 pharmacies nationwide. There are 11 pharmacies in the county that are enrolled in the Coast2Coast card program.


The program isn’t an insurance plan but offers cut-rate prices on drugs.


“A lot of people don’t have insurance,” Commissioner Reggie Loper said. “I think it would be good to try. There is no cost to the county and no cost to the citizens.”


Seven counties in the state are under contract and two others have approved the program and are awaiting signed contracts.


“Very few counties have the program,” Hudzinksi-Sero said. “Most of those counties have had it for a few months so they don’t have a lot of data.”


The county can get out of the deal with a 30-day notice without penalty to Financial Marketing Concepts. The county also gets $1.25 for each qualified prescription filled.


“I think it’s worth trying,” said Commissioner Steve Mason.


Hudzinski-Sero offered a concern that, as a marketing company, Financial Marketing Concepts could sell its list of names and addresses. But Jones said the company stated those claims are false and said its Web site claims it does not sell the names and addresses to other marketers.


The county also has to hold either a news conference or issue a release announcing the start of the program and provide a link on its Web site.

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