NOVEMBER 01, 2006

The Coalition for Community Pharmacy Action (CCPA) is asking for pharmacists' help. The coalition is conducting a national survey to determine the cost of dispensing prescriptions. The results will help fight further reductions in Medicaid reimbursement. The accounting firm Grant Thornton will conduct the survey.

Congress passed legislation this year that will cut Medicaid payments to states from the federal government, starting in 2007. The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) was able to spare an average of $11,000 per pharmacy from being slashed. Many state officials, however, will be contemplating how the states will reimburse pharmacies for Medicaid prescriptions.

The CCPA survey is only one of the costs-of-dispensing evaluations that have been conducted. Data in the 2006 NCPA-Pfizer Digest, for example, put the cost of dispensing at $10.53 per prescription. Yet, pharmacy opponents often criticize that figure because it is calculated by the group representing community pharmacy. The Grant Thornton evaluation is being handled independently and will determine the cost of dispensing for all retail, chain, and independent pharmacies, by state.