Express Scripts — broken patient-pharmacy confidentiality
Since I am under 26, I am allowed to be on my parent's healthcare. My problems with Express Scripts arises from their inability to have a functioning database. My parent and I were on the same healthcare account and thus we were on the same Express Scripts account. On their forms Express Scripts allows you to enter separate contact information (phone, address, e-mail, etc) for 2 separate patients on one account. My parent was patient 1, and I was patient 2.
Like many 18-26 year olds, I went out of state for college and lived my life in a separate part of the country. Express Scripts seemed to find this far too mind boggling to understand. How can 2 separate, but related, people live separate lives in different areas with different health needs?!
REPEATEDLY I would get calls and letters addressed to my parent, about their CONFIDENTIAL prescription information, and my parent would repeatedly get similar contact about MY confidential prescriptions. Sometimes the robocalls would go in infinite loops where it called the wrong person, and if we said we were not the patient they were looking for, they would call back. We would have to lie and say we were the correct patient just to talk to someone to say that Express Scripts had it wrong AGAIN.
We both called and e-mailed complaints about this every few months. Each time Express Scripts would say they “corrected the contact information” or say that “they had the correct contact information already entered.” Clearly, they did not, as we kept getting the wrong letters and calls. Sometimes it would work for more than just 2-4 months, but then I would have the audacity to move. How dare I, an adult human, in a free country, change address and let Express Scripts know about it?!
Eventually the inevitable happened, Express Scripts started sending the wrong medication to the wrong patient a couple times a year. I got my parent's (life threatening) medicine, and they got mine. This, of course, could get Express Scripts SUED for breaking pharmacy-patient confidentiality rules. It is a SERIOUS BREACH of medical ethics. This is not mentioning that lots of prescription drugs are abused and sold on the black market. If I was an addict or an abuser, and the wrong prescription sent to me I could do some very illegal things with it.
Most of the time we would have to use OUR OWN MONEY to (sometimes rush) deliver the medication to each other. One time Express Scripts sent me packaging so that I could send my parent's medication back to Express Scripts, so that it could be destroyed, and they would pay for the shipping. How selfless of Express Scripts! Of course, to get this packaging my parent and I had to jump through hoops on the phone and e-mail. They asked me to open the package to confirm what medication it was. Each time I had to remind them that could get them sued for breaking pharmacy-patient confidentiality, then they would backtrack and agree with me. When they FINALLY sent me the packaging the paperwork was not addressed to me (once again, it was addressed to the wrong person) asked me to confirm what medication it was (once again, would be breaking confidentiality.)
One would think that with 2 patients on the account Express Scripts would send the correct medication, phone call, or letter to the correct person approximately 50% of the time. They never once reached that level of competence, it was always 66%-75% wrong. If they had decided who to contact using the flip of a coin, they would have had a better success rate.
Express Scripts' astounding levels of ineptitude and hideous customer service is going to get them sued someday, and given the nature of their work, will kill someone someday.
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