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Walgreens drops Medicaid program in Delaware


Deerfield, Ill. Feeling the pinch from harsh slashes in Delaware’s Medicaid program, Walgreen said Thursday that its area Walgreens and Happy Harry’s stores will discontinue filling Medicaid prescriptions.

Under the new Medicaid rules that began April 1, the state is reducing the amount it will cover for brand-name prescriptions, making Delaware one of the few states providing the lowest payment rates. The new program will become part of Delaware’s fiscal budget July 1.

After much deliberation, Walgreens chose not to participate in the program because it was uneconomical for the chain.

“In some cases, we would be paid less than what it costs to fill prescriptions,” explained Kermit Crawford, the chain’s senior VP pharmacy.

Through a partnership with the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, Walgreens offered alternative programs that could help Delaware fill its Medicaid budget gap. Many of these alternatives were rejected, according to a company statement.

In other news, Walgreens plans to launch a Web-based portal that will allow patients to gather, store and share health histories.

By partnering with Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft, Walgreens’ HealthVault platform, available on, will enable shoppers to review prescription data; store copies of their health records obtained from other sources such as health providers, insurance plans, or employers; upload information from health and fitness devices; and share information with health-care providers and trainers. HealthVault will also allow parents to track their children’s medical history and that of older relatives.

The solution will debut later this year.

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