Monday, January 23, 2012

AMA vs APhA.... looking out for the interests of their members

Just a quick note on this article that I found on Twitter today.

The AMA pays close attention to the reimbursements that its members receive from third-parties and addresses the issues instantly. Whenever the evening news announces a cut in Medicare reimbursement rates, you can put money down that the AMA will have a statement releases by the start of the next day's news cycle. The AMA understands that without adequate reimbursement, the standard of care will drop and businesses will fail. In the article that I link to, the AMA offers ideas for its members who might be a little cash-strapped.

Let's compare that to the APhA.

The big topics in retail pharmacy over the last couple months has been the Walgreens-Express Scripts drama over reimbursements.

I did a little search on the APhA website to see if there was any commentary on the issue. From the home page I searched for "Express Scripts". Top search result...a 2007 article about drug prices.

So I went over to the APhA CEO blog. With the edit button of my browser I did a "Ctrl+F" (Find on this page) search for "express". Only one match for "express" among the ten blog posts. You probably already know that it didn't match up to Express Scripts.

One of the biggest stories in pharmacy, centering around reimbursement issues, and the APhA has yet to address the issues on its web-site.

Rule #1 for business. You must make money to stay in business. The AMA gets it.


Pharmaciststeve said...

APHA back in the 60's was a driving force behind the "garden variety Pharmacist" believing that a "professional fee" was much preferable to a per-cent mark up. This would make us more professional than merchant.. this is about the same time that the PBM ( PCS/Paid) started.. In fact back then we had to PAY then a ANNUAL FEE to have the "benefit" of being able to send in our paper claims to them... As I remember it was $25/yr EACH. That is when the average Rx was $4-$5 and the RPH wage per hour was similar. minimum wage was $1.60/hr I don't know many Pharmacists that currently think that the "professional fee thing" has worked out very well for the profession. Maybe the APHA has involvement with the PBM's is enough to last several life times!

Eric Polston said...

It is painfully obvious, that pharmacy has no professional organization that is looking out for its interests. With the expansion of the new pharmacy schools, you are seeing the profession being completely destroyed. I see 24 yr olds with absolutely no interest in pharmacy, only the paycheck. A sad end to what was once a noble profession.