Mail Order Pharmacy Recurring Nightmare

I have had one problem or another each time I attempt to order insulin from my insurance carrier’s mail order pharmacy. Each time it results in numerous phone calls and a lot of aggravation to get my order. Typically I end up having to get samples from my endocrinologist to hold me over until I get a shipment. I’m considering throwing in the towel and opting to pay more to get my insulin at a traditional retail pharmacy. Do others struggle with mail order pharmacies?

I hate to gloat, but no, I have Medco and they are very reliable in delivering my insulin in timely manner and good condition. They do take a few days to process, though they ship overnight, so I can’t cut it too close with my order, but I never do that anyway. I click click with my mouse, they take out the correct copay from my account and the insulin appears on my doorstep.


I’m glad you’ve had good luck with Medco. A couple of times I received my insulin not cool. I called them and they said it would be ok. I now have insurance that allows me to get my insulin at the local drugstore, thankfully.

Gary – do you mean I should buy my insulin from Canada, are you advising me to dodge the draft, or do you think I would be good at curling?

I hate my mail order pharmacy. Most of the time I have to send back my insulin because it was not shipped correctly. They have sent it out without ice packs, they have shipped it regular mail were it took a week to get to me, they have let it freeze, they have allowed it to be place on my porch all day and they have even lost it. I had ice crystals in my insulin one time and the pharmacy told me that it was probably OK to use. I have to request them to make me sign for it each time they send out my insulin. You name it they have done it. I wish I could afford to go to the local pharmacy to get my medications.

Now my durable medical supplier is a different story. They are the best. I would not change them for the world.

This is one of the problems with online…but for some it’s less money to do it online. My father-in-law always has a problem

I haven’t really thought about mail-order since there is a well-stocked CVS a few blocks away, but maybe I should. Do you guys use it for more than just insulin? Why is it cheaper? I essentially pay in full for everything for the first 8 months of the year (really high deductible) so lower month-month costs of supplies would be appreciated :slight_smile:

Jackie, with mail order you usually pay a two month copay to get three months of prescriptions, so you’re getting four months free a year. Seeing as you’re paying the full price, you could save a substantial amount of money.

Caremark mail order pharmacy is owned by CVS. I don’t know whether your insurance would have to offer it as a benefit in order to use it, you could inquire.

Thanks Sue! I will look into this!


I feel your pain! Since 2004, my mail order pharmacy folks have gotten my insulin prescription correct about 2 times! This last time I had them get a supervisor and the head pharmacist on the phone. I asked them to tell me the EXACT words that they need to see on the prescription in order to get it filled properly. Then I went to the doctor and gave them the information and they told me exactly when they sent the prescription. I then followed up with the mail order folks after 48 hours. Did they receive the prescription, exactly how are they planning on filling it (what insulin, a cartridge or a vial, how many vials are they planning on sending, etc). I think I might have finally broken the code.

I had to work extremely hard to keep from losing it on the phone because the mail order pharmacy wants to see prescriptions written without any ambiguity, in a language that only they understand. Otherwise, they figure out how to ship the minimum amount of insulin using the cheapest shipping method possible, your actual needs are immaterial.

There are few things in this world that I hate, but my mail order pharmacy is one of them.

Fair Winds,

Medco by mail has been filling my orders for years and I’ve had no trouble or struggles. Would it help if you asked your doc to just send them the RX each time? Is it only the insulin you have issues with?

Oh man. I could write a book re my mailorder pharmacy. My insulin is delivered via Fed Ex and has to be signed for. Back when I was working there was no one home to sign. I talked to an endless amount of people and explained that they’d have to let me get it locally. I even got my corporation’s health care advocate to intervene. No such luck.
Then I realized that there was a Fed Ex shipping office about 10 blocks away and I could have it delivered there and pick it up after work. Well, guess what? They sent it UPS so Fed Ex wouldn’t accept it.
One time I got someone else’s anti psychotic meds.
Then in my most recent shipment of oral meds they started using a new childproof packaging. I coud not get the bottle open. I called and was told yes, they’d been having a few problems and did I have a table saw?
I really miss my neighborhood pharmacy. The pharmacist has known me for years and got me out of a jam when I lost all my suppplies on a camping trip.

Two cop-pays instead of 3 for a 90 day supply you save one co-pay every 90 days. They will even setup to send out your meds as soon as the insurance will allow.

Donna, no, I do not. I use MEDCO which is the mail order prescription company for my insurance. I have Blue Cross. I get a 90 day supply for $70 (it just went up again this year from $65.00) They ship it overnight, so I know when to look for it as it’s very hot here in Georgia during the summer months. I order ALL my meds over the internet, and they email me when they get shipped…

I don’t order my insulin like I do my other meds thru mail order…But,I am about to because of the cost difference. Only one time ever I ordered insulin by mail. When it arrived, all of the boxes were soaking wet and I was a little alarmed at that.