Due to the recent flooding, many Louisiana Medicaid recipients are in need of essential medications. Here is some important information for anyone seeking to get a refill of their prescription medications.
How can I find an open pharmacy to fill my prescription?
To find an open pharmacy in flood-affected areas, go to https://www.healthcareready.org/rxopen.
Pharmacists’ Authority to Dispense Prescriptions in an Emergency by the Louisiana Board of Pharmacy
Louisiana-licensed pharmacists working in parishes affected by this emergency may dispense a one-time emergency prescription of up to a 30-day supply of a prescribed medication if:
- In the pharmacist's professional opinion the medication is essential to the maintenance of life or to the continuation of therapy, and
- The pharmacist makes a good faith effort to reduce the information to a written prescription marked "Emergency Prescription," then file and maintain the prescription as required by law.
This authority applies to all patients, regardless of health insurance coverage, whether public or private coverage or uninsured. It does not provide for payment of the prescription.
Payment for Emergency Prescriptions for Medicare Part D Recipients
Information on emergency prescriptions for people with Medicare Part D coverage can be found at:
Payment for Emergency Prescriptions for Medicaid Recipients
To ensure access to essential medications for its members during this emergency, Louisiana Medicaid has temporarily changed its policies to:
- Allow for payment of prescriptions that would otherwise be considered too soon to refill,
- Waive recipient copay requirements, and
- Remove prior authorization requirements for many drugs used to treat chronic conditions.
Most controlled substances and specialty drugs will still require prior authorization.
These changes apply only to residents of the following flood-impacted parishes: Acadia, Allen, Ascension, Assumption, Avoyelles, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Evangeline, Iberia, Iberville, Jefferson Davis, Lafayette, Livingston, Point Coupee, St. Charles, St. Helena, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Vermilion, Vernon, Washington, West Baton Rouge, West Feliciana.
While the changes apply to both Fee for Service members and managed care enrollees, operational details vary. Details on the policy changes for Fee for Service members can be found at http://www.lamedicaid.com/provweb1/Pharmacy/FFS_Emergency_Pharmacy_Overrides.pdf
Details on the on the policy changes for members of each of the five Medicaid managed care organizations – Aetna, Amerigroup, AmeriHealth Caritas, Louisiana Healthcare Connections, and United HealthCare – are available on each plan’s individual website.
Payment for Emergency Prescriptions for People without Health Insurance
Louisiana has activated the federal Emergency Prescription Assistance Program (EPAP) to help uninsured residents of parishes affected by the flooding meet their pharmacy needs for the duration of the emergency. The program will pay for certain prescription drugs, specific medical supplies, vaccines and limited durable medical equipment available through retail pharmacies in Louisiana and nationwide. For more information, see http://www.phe.gov/Preparedness/planning/epap/Pages/affected-areas.aspx.
The Louisiana Department of Health strives to protect and promote health statewide and to ensure access to medical, preventive and rehabilitative services for all state residents. To learn more about LDH, visit www.ldh.la.gov. For up-to-date health information, news and emergency updates, follow LDH's Twitter account and Facebook.