It has been common practice for pharmacies to offer cash rewards or gift cards to entice customers to transfer their existing prescription from another pharmacy. In some cases, customers were able to earn up to $500 a year by transferring prescriptions. However, in Tennessee, the practice of offering cash incentives for prescription transfers is now prohibited with a recent Tennessee State Board of Pharmacy rule.
Reasons for the New Rule
The new rule addresses the concern for patient safety and care, because continually transferring prescriptions and using several pharmacies instead of one makes it difficult to monitor possible drug interactions. Tennessee has followed suit, as other states before it have prohibited this practice.
What this Means for Tennessee Pharmacies and Others
Customers still have the freedom to choose where they want to fill their prescriptions. Pharmacies are still free to maintain their drug discount card programs and loyalty programs where customers earn points on their purchases, provided these programs don’t promote transferring prescriptions from one pharmacy to another. But this doesn’t mean pharmacies are prevented from seeking new prescription customers, and Alphascrip can help.
Alphascrip offers ROI-driven programs for states where transfer incentives are still permitted and alternative ways to attract customers where transfer incentives are no longer allowed, including:
- Supplying sample vouchers to physicians
- Copay offset assistance programs
- Offering compounding services
- Patient adherence programs
While the new rule may result in setbacks for companies that attracted customers through transfer rewards, it also provides an opportunity for companies to focus on retaining the customers they have, boosting brand reputation and offering other cost-saving options.