Bertie offers free discount drug cards

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 8, 2006

WINDSOR – After months of planning, Bertie County is launching a prescription drug discount card that is free and open to all residents.

In an effort to help its citizens cope with the high price of prescription drugs, the county is making free prescription drug discount cards available under a program sponsored by the National Association of Counties (NACo). That plan offers an average savings of 20 percent off the retail price of commonly prescribed drugs.

The cards may be used by all county residents, regardless of age, income or existing health coverage. They will be accepted at many of the county’s pharmacies. A national network of more than 57,000 participating retail pharmacies also honors the NACo card.

“Bertie County is proud to be one of the counties nationwide participating with NACo,” Rick Harrell, Chairman of the Bertie Board of Commissioners, said. “The NACo prescription discount card offers significant savings for the uninsured and underinsured residents of our county.”

What makes the plan so unique it that it works for everyone.

“Even those fortunate to have prescription coverage can use the card to save money on drugs that are not covered by their health plan,” Harrell noted. “Residents do not have to be Medicare beneficiaries to be eligible for this program.”

Beginning Monday, April 10, cards will be available at the Bertie County Manager’s Office, Bertie County Department of Social Services, Bertie County Council on Aging and the Bertie County Health Department. County residents can call toll-free at 1-877-321-2652 for assistance with the program.

Norman Cherry Sr., Vice-Chairman of the Bertie Commissioners, pointed out the ease of which the cards work.

“Using the NACo prescription discount card is easy,” he said. “Simply present it at a participating pharmacy. There is no enrollment form, no membership fee and no restrictions or limits on frequency of use. Cardholders and their family members may use the card any time their prescriptions are not covered by insurance.”

Other than offered free of charge, there are other pluses to this plan, including:

It can be used to help defray the costs of some pet medications, as long as that drug has been prescribed by a veterinarian.

The card is active for use as soon as it is received. There is no waiting period.

While the card cannot be used for over-the-counter products or non-prescription medications, discounts are available for many diabetic supplies.

Savings vary on each prescription, but the average is 20 percent off the pharmacy’s regular retail price. Additional savings are offered by choosing from a list of select medications.

Replacement cards are available by calling the toll-free number listed earlier.

Remember that this program is not an insurance plan. It is a prescription discount program.

This discount card program is administered by Caremark Rx, Inc.