Can Assisted Living require me to use a specific pharmacy service?

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My mom has been in the same AL facility for several years. I have been getting her meds from Express Scripts and giving them the bottles to dispense as directed. Now they are telling me that new New Hampshire laws starting in Feb. have put restrictions on what LNAs can do with meds and they are REQUIRING me to use their (expensive) pharmacy service that gives a prepackaged supply of dialy pills.

I can't find a reference to new laws on the web. I can't believe this is legal. Has anybody encountered this? Please HELP! I can't afford their service!

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KM1027, 280 Depends for around $200 is about the cheapest price that I have found. My mom uses Always, max absorb panties, I have found best online price at Walmart dot com. Used to be 20 or 30 % coupons at CVS, but I suspect they've custom -filtered my specific account to make them unavailable to me, they are never in stock (for me) anymore. I buy them in the Value Pack which is 28 panties for about $22. I don't know of any cheaper places.....sometimes you can sign up for Auto-Delivery and save 20%. But I hate those Auto-Delivery, personally, you might accumulate too much or run short. Hope you can find a good deal--maybe check Sam's Club, their house brand was priced really great. But my mom has to have the exact brand that she wants. Heaven help me if the company changes from lavender color to pink or peach, she will have a fit.
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Yes, my husband is in assisted living and the require everyone to get their meds from an assisted living pharmacy and I get billed directly from them. Yes, it is crazy- very expensive. His meds come to about $ 200. per month.
Anyone know where you can get Depends ( or similar) cheaper than Wal Mart or Costco? My husband goes through 70 a week. My bill for Depends also runs close to $ 200. a month- all this over and above the AL fees.
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depends on what your STATE LAW is. I am in Alabama and they REQUIRE all meds to be bubble packed. that sounds simple rite? good luck because not many LOCAL pharmacies do that and the few that DO charge upwards of $30 per CARD per MED. and that is NOT covered by insurance, its all out of pocket. VERY FEW AL or memory care or even nursing homes allow bottle meds anymore for no other reason than its MORE INCOME FOR THE FACILITY to have their own provider and charge whatever prices they want. they will tell you it is because there is less chance of meds mixup per patient, but thats not so. clear and simple, its all always about MONEY. good luck, i have gone thru this for yrs now as Mom has gone fr AL to memory care and each place has its own rules for anything and EVERYTHING and they know you HAVE to have their services so you are stuck. there is NO CHOICE in how things are done/meds dispensed or even if the facility pharmacy CHOOSES TO ONLY USE GENERICS. i have had to insist Moms Dr specifically instruct the meds NOT BE GENERIC because Mom has had reaction to the 'fillers' used in some in the past. Good luck. really.
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In a southern state; our personal care home requires them since a an aide can pas them out and a nurse is not required to be there. I tried to get any other pharmacy to do the bubble wrap deal, but none would since they also must deliver and none wanted to go this far. We've had nothing but trouble with our pharmacy billing us wrong, calling doc's refill line to get expensive meds that the doc did not want her to continue, etc. One of these caused mthr's broken arms when she was doped up on double meds when pharmacy was sending one batch for her hospice covered meds then a second using the private pay. The aids just used what was labled for her!
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The rules are constantly changing, my reference is to the 2012 changes made.
Good for you for questioning this inadequate "system" and attempting to save money in this present health care crisis.
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HMO also called a managed care network . Go to the admin office where your mom lives, see the regulation (must be posted by law.) I could be wrong.
The reason "they" cannot explain the rules to your satisfaction is that they don't know why or how to interpret the regulations. I am going to give you some ideas so you can seek the answers you need. The new regulations have to do with Medicaid regulations requiring all Medicaid recipients to choose from within a managed care network; and who is qualified to administer medication at the AL.
For licensing purposes, and so the LNA's can give the meds at the AL, the state regulatory agency (www.state.nj.us/health) may have required the bubble packages be administered (by the technically unqualified LNA), therefore the leap to pharmacy rules. Think of it like a hospital's requirement that you pay $$$huge amount for one tylenol so that the nurse can administer the meds, and you are not allowed to take your own.
I would try to bypass these rules, stating that you require mom's meds be administered by an R.N.
IF mom is able, can she take her own meds that you put in a 7 day minder box ahead of time?
If you are private pay, do not let them treat you under the rules required for Medicaid patients for their own convenience.

Posting this unfinished, sorry.
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Even though HMO type doctors send me off to their labs, pharmacy etc. I take the written order to anywhere that is not affiliated with the HMO, and I can do that because I have "stand alone medicare"
If your mother is in a facility that is full service and you assigned her health insurance to them, their doctors, their labs, their pharmacy, then your choices may be limited, like with any HMO. Are you calling Medicare? Be sure the "laws" they are quoting are not just the policy of the facility for their convenience.
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Wow this all sounds tterrible. My mom is still at home and we get rx at local pharmacy in person, but I know about Express Script as that is what I use. Mom's pharmacy is not open 24/7 but I can get a very quick reply to a question. OTO, I have had trouble getting thru to ES to ask a simple question, and they are supposedly open 24/7.....I cannot imagine having to deal with the secretly-profitting organization associated with a nursing home that I'm paying $87,000 a year. Mom isn't in AL yet and we hope to avoid NH if possible. But these types of schemes do nothing to help the public trust level of these very expensive facilities. They should come clean and be very transparent of these profitable associations. It sounds illegal to me.
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I feel your pain, AnnOnymis. I was on the phone today for half an hour over the same issue I've called about at least four previous times. They were charging me for meds while my mom was in the hospital!!! They are still charging for the few meds that I get through Express Scripts, even though I've told them and told them and even made a formal list of the meds they should supply and what they should NOT and gave the list to everybody involved. I get so frustrated with all of it, if I had the room for her in my house, I think I would have taken her out of there a long time ago (and likely regretted it).

Hang in. I know how hard it is, and everybody who hasn't had someone in AL or a NH thinks that you do little to nothing because you loved one is "being taken care of." HUH!!!
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Experiencing this same issue in Washington state, in fact the caregiver is national (services in more than 30 states) and it has its own pharmacy service, both of which are run as "for profit" with a presence on the stock markeet (NASDAQ) AND buy/sell recommendations AND litigation issues involving fraud markup for medicare/medicade patients who are forced to by OTC drugs from THEIR pharmacy! The bubble wrap format has changed 3 times in the past year, the kinds of generics change almost monthly, as well. My attempts to find support has been 4 hours of phone calls to "wait and hold" numbers for Washington Health Plan Information. Extremely frustrating!
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