Could someone be using my Insurance to buy pharmacuticals? - page 2
So I thought I would put this out there for you guys, and before I start I'll admit i didn't do to too much research to see if its been covered before. Well here's the situation: yesterday I want... Read More
May 7, '09this isnt only an addiction issue, this is an expense issue....if you have no insurance and need expensive meds...getting someone elses insurance info may be handy
May 7, '09I know that it is possible for addicts to get hold of someone's rx's, but I think that going overboard with security measures would only create all sorts of other problems. I used to have to pick up my mother's rx's all the time for her because she was 81+ and didn't drive anymore. She had lorazepam and hydrocodone among her meds. More often than not, if someone other than the patient picks up the medications, it is going to be a situation like that. I think the best idea is to keep your meds (especially if you have any controlled substances that would be desirable to others) locked up at home so that people can't study the labels. As for my own meds, which don't include any controlled substances, if I had to produce my insurance ID card every time I picked them up, I'd be in bad shape because I'm one of those extremely disorganized people who half the time can't remember what I did with my card!
One time a friend who went through treatment came to me (as part of her 12 step recovery process, the step where you make amends to others) and told me that she had taken some pills out of my purse several years before while visiting my home. I had no idea that she had a drug problem, and I never could figure out when she might have done this, as I never had any meds that I would have thought would interest anybody, and she hadn't been to my house that many times and I couldn't imagine her having access to my purse long enough to go through it. But yeah, it can happen, I guess...anything can happen, but when you consider the multitude of customers the pharmacies deal with, I wouldn't really like for them to grill me every time I picked up a prescription.
May 8, '09After hearing the stories that my patients have told me about the various things they have done to get other people's meds, I wouldn't mind showing ID to a pharmacist...I'm just REALLY glad that they all know me here since I'm the one calling in scripts for my clinic! lol
May 8, '09I totally get the 'over security' issue and how much of a headache it would be to have more private info n a pharmacy computer system.
My biggest concern about the insurance abuse. If you've ever been on the wrong side of identity theft, you know how much info they have.
What prompted me to write this thread was not only my recent experience at the pharmacy, but also about a year ago the same pharmacy called me and told me that they couldn't refill a perscription for antibiotics. I explaine that I never called in for a refill. The person on the other end explained that I had called it in an hour earlier via the tele-prompted refill service. I assured him that it wasn't me and never thought about it agan until this week. While waiting in the drive-drive up window...maybe too much time on my hands, right!
But on a serious note, we as nurses know to tear off the labels on our medication bottles, but how many others do? Anyone pilfering through the trash would have enough information to fraudulently use our insurance info, especially since they don't even have to talk to a person to request a refill.
May 8, '09In Australia, where the cost of medications is heavily subsidised by the PBS, you have to hand over your Medicare card along with the script. The only information on the card is your Medicare number, name and card expiration. No address, birthdate or personal information, but unless you have the card you can't get the meds.
May 8, '09I worked in retail pharmacy as a Pharmacy Technician for three years and I agree that the situation of someone knowing that you had a prescription ready or that it had refills, which pharmacy it was at, and all that identifying information is pretty unlikely. Also, unless its a narcotic who would want to steal your medicine anyway? The pharmacy staff also generally becomes pretty familiar with their patients also.
Now the narcotics, that's a different story. At the pharmacy I worked at we did check IDs for every narcotic that was picked up (unless we knew the patient well). We would let immediate family pick up for their relatives and check IDs with them too (again, these were usually patients we were familiar with). If someone came by to pick up a narc for someone who was not immediate familiy then we would sometimes allow them to pick it up (generally this was a case by case basis...if it felt sketchy then we wouldnt let them or we would attempt to contact the patient by phone.)
Occasionally we would have an incident where we would have a patient say that they never got their meds, that someone else picked them up, etc. This was usually when we went back to the pick up signature log and compared signatures and they suddenly "remembered" that they did pick it up. Also when stuff like that happened we would put a note in the name line of their profile that said "Check ID" and it would print out between their first and last name on their prescription label. The technicians all knew that if that appeared on the label that that patient was the only person who could pick up their prescriptions-no exceptions. The pharmacist is responsible for control of narcotics and preventing narcotic diversion and has the right to refuse to dispense medications to protect his license in a situation like this. Therfore we could do the "Check ID" thing even if the patient didnt want it...and many times they didnt because they wanted to get extra narc refills by saying that they didnt get them because someone else "stole" them.
If anyone is worried about someone picking up their stuff then just ask the pharmacy...I'm sure that the pharmacy I worked at isnt the only one that has that capability. It would be ridiculous to "check ID" for every prescription...think about how long you have to wait in line in the drive-thru as it is!
In any case we had very few incidents and probably only 10-15 "check ID" patients and this was a pretty busy pharmacy. Unless you have a specific reason to fear that someone else is going to try to pick up your stuff then I wouldnt really worry about it.