Pharos-Tribune

December 26, 2012

Commissioners look to increase prescription card users

Card had one of lowest usage months in December

by Caitlin Huston

— The Cass County Commissioners are hoping to expand the use of the county’s prescription card, which had one of its lowest months of usage in December.   

The card program began in June 2008 and offers card holders discounts on prescription medications at most pharmacies. Any county resident without prescription coverage can use this program, according to the National Association of Counties website, which partners with Cass County to offer the program. Even if you have prescription insurance coverage, you may still benefit from the discount card since it may save you money on prescriptions your existing plan does not cover, the website states.

The numbers in Cass County are not as high as hoped and Cass County Commission President Dave Arnold said he feels more people should take advantage of the free program.

Though the commissioners often talk about the prescription card program, Commissioner Jim Sailors said he believes the public is largely absent from the meetings and aren’t aware of it.

“We say it but people have to be listening,” Sailors said.

Arnold said November had the lowest amount of users with 86 people that tried to use it, but weren’t able to and 36 people who successfully used it.  

“This month was one of the lowest months we’ve had,” Arnold said.

The highest monthly rate has been 200 users, Arnold said.

Percentage wise, he said, it’s clear that the people who have the card are frequently using it.

“It’s the same people using it over and over,” Arnold said.

Since the program’s beginning, Arnold said the residents using the cards have saved $65,767 on prescriptions, which amounts to about $9 off a prescription, Arnold said.

“They’re savings on the average of 20 percent,” Arnold said.

Sailors said he believes people would want to take advantage of the card because of the high cost of prescriptions.

“It looks to me like they’d be glad to use the cards,” Sailors said.

Arnold also said he believes the cards can help make prescriptions more affordable.

“I’m strong believer,” Arnold said. “There are things that can help the people.”

MORE INFORMATION:

The free prescription cards are available in the Commissioner’s Office and Recorder’s Office of the Cass County Government Building, 200 Court Park. For more information, log on to www.nacorx.org.