The cards are free and are initially being accepted by 46 pharmacies in the county, with that number expected to grow, County Commission Chairman Carol Page and Commissioner Dannie Mc-
Davis County is the first of the state's 29 counties to officially offer the program, which has been in the works for three years, McConkie said. A few states have started similar programs, including New Mexico and Ohio, through the National Associ-ation of Counties. Some 76 counties nationwide, out of well over 3,000, are offering the program currently.
Under the plan, a customer presents the card at his or her pharmacy when renewing or seeking a prescription. The pharmacist can readily calculate what the savings will be using the card, averaging about 20 percent. If the customer has health insurance covering prescriptions, the savings may or may not be greater using the card, especially when many plans' deductibles are figured in, the commissioners explained.
"This is an opportunity for the uninsured, senior citizen, the underinsured, for some people where insurance coverage is not optional. It's an easy way to save some real money," McConkie emphasized. "My mother's drugs averaged about $280 a month to purchase. Twenty percent savings would've been significant. We're very pleased" to be able to offer the program, he added.
The card cannot be used in combination with insurance or other coverage, he continued.
"Even those fortunate enough to have prescription coverage can use the card to save money on drugs that are not covered by their health plan," McConkie said. "Residents do not have to be Medicare beneficiaries to be eligible for this program."
"Using the card is easy," Page said. "There is no enrollment form, no membership fee, and no restrictions or limits on frequency of use. Cardholders and their family members may use the card any time their prescriptions are not covered by insurance."