Prevalence of Unclaimed Prescriptions at Military Pharmacies

Publisher: Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy, vol.14, no. 6
Aug 30, 2008
Dominick Esposito, Eric Schone, Thomas Williams, Su Liu, Karen CyBulski, Rita Stapulonis, and Nancy Clusen
Prescriptions ordered by physicians but not picked up by patients offer an opportunity for quality improvement in health systems. In the military system, prescriptions filled at military pharmacies are dispensed with no co-payment, providing an opportunity to examine factors other than out-of-pocket cost that contribute to unclaimed prescriptions. The authors noted an 8 percent self-reported rate for not picking up a prescription—with previous research noting rates of between 0.45 and 22 percent in nonmilitary populations. Although reasons for not picking up a prescription were generally consistent with those identified in previous studies, they were only partially consistent with the military pharmacy literature, which also noted that patients did not know they had a prescription waiting or already had some prescribed medicine at home.