physicians dispensing medications

I just read a work comp blog and was shocked to hear that in Florida doctors dispense and charge for medication. The blogger said that this was the fox guarding the hen house, and I agree.

In my state doctors sometimes give patients samples. This helps in figuring out the right dosage, getting patients on medication immediately, and in helping those who can't afford their medications. The only time patients get charged is for something they have to have help to take, like an IV medication.

It is bad enough that pharmaceutical companies spend so much time wooing doctors and giving them all the free samples so they can induce doctors to prescribe their drugs. At least the patients who receive the free samples benefit from it. If the doctor is earning money on the medication though, it seems a little too easy to me to decide the patient will be better off with more days prescribed, or a more expensive medication. Ethical people, doctors, executives, or whomever, are rarely seduced into doing wrong overnight. It is a slow step by step process. Allowing them to make money on prescriptions sets them up for the process.

Does your state allow this? Do you think it helps or hinders the process?


  • 3 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Oklahoma operates much the same as Kansas. But, let's think about this for a minute. If the middleman (pharmacy) is taken out of the equation, shouldn't it follow that the medications would be much less expensive for the consumer?

    Sonny, you're in Florida. Tell us how it works?
  • I don't think Alaska allows doctors to dispense & charge for meds. At least I've never heard of it around here. I have to agree that it seems like if doctors could charge for medication, they would be more apt to prescribe the more expensive medication. But, as Joannie says, by eliminating the middleman (pharmacy), it could conceivably lower the overall cost of the medications. We have had a couple of pharmacys in our area refuse to join the bigger insurance networks because they have flat-out said that if they do, they'll be forced to take our $10/$30/$50 copays for drugs that they can charge us so much more for if they remain out-of-network providers.

    I'd be interested in hearing how it works from someone who actually has seen the doctors dispensing & charging for meds.
  • I am not familar with this but that is not to say it is not accurate. Our WC all goes thru pharmacies but as I write I THINK we had one case. . and I think it was pain management. .that did distribute thru Dr. Personally, (not WC) I have never been given a prescription by Dr.
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