Benefits Plans - Prescription Drug Plan: Special Voluntary Programs
U-M Prescription Drug Plan members may receive notification about participating in a voluntary prescription drug program. Members are eligible for these programs based on specific selection criteria. Some members are notified by U.S. mail, others may notice an automatic discount co-pay on a prescription. Below are short descriptions of the programs and member contact information for each program.
Generic Over-the-Counter (OTC) Tobacco Treatment Pilot Program
$5 co-pay for select generic OTC tobacco treatment products
Sponsors: U-M Benefits Office, MHealthy Tobacco Independence Program
Phone: 1-800-681-9578 MedImpact Member Service; 734-998-2193 MTIP Tobacco Consultation Service
Effective September 1, 2010 coverage of select generic over-the-counter (OTC) tobacco treatment products is available to all eligible U-M employees and their dependents with a $5 per month co-pay. Products include generic nicotine patch, generic nicotine gum, and generic nicotine lozenge. Brand name OTC nicotine replacement products will not be covered. Patients will need either a written prescription from a licensed prescriber or an authorization letter from an MTIP tobacco treatment specialist. Further detail is available in the letter from MedImpact.
Co-pay discount on a select list of medications discontinued on December 31, 2012
The university discontinued the diabetes medication cost-deduction program as of January 1, 2013 based on pilot study findings. A team of university researchers, clinicians, and benefits administration staff studied the effects of this copay relief program on medication adherence at U-M and found no significant change. Overall, U-M faculty and staff have a high level of adherence in taking their recommended medications, so the pilot program did not have a significant effect.
There are several effective ways to continue to reduce out-of-pocket medication costs:
- Use Generic Medications
Many of the medications included in the Diabetes Medication Cost Reduction program are available generically at the lowest copay ($5 for up a 34-day supply for most employees). We encourage you and your physician to consider generic medication options when available and appropriate.
- Use the Mail Order Pharmacy and Save One-third of the Cost
Consider filling your prescription(s) at the U-M mail order pharmacy, NoviXus Pharmacy Services, to receive 90-day supplies of your prescriptions mailed to your home for only two copays, saving one-third of your out-of-pocket cost of the same amount of medication purchased from a retail pharmacy (benefits.umich.edu/plans/drugs/mailorder.html).
- Health Care Flexible Spending Account
Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts are available to eligible faculty and staff members to set aside pre-tax dollars to pay for health care out-of-pocket costs such as prescription drug copays.
Coverage of diabetic injectable iInsulin, needles and syringes will continue under the U-M Prescription Drug Plan. Coverage of diabetic supplies and equipment (injection devices, alcohol swabs, testing strips, lancets, and blood glucose testing monitors) is determined by your health plan participation.
50% co-pay discount and free pill splitter
Sponsor: U-M Benefits Office (based on research by the U-M School of Pharmacy).
Pharmacist Instructions: benefits.umich.edu/forms/rxpillsplit.pdf
The “Statins”, cholesterol lowering medications, are available in numerous different strength tablets at the same or very similar cost. When physicians prescribe half as many higher-strength pills and have the patient split the tablet to the desired dosage, the cost can be reduced as much as 50%.
As of January 1, 2006 the U-M Prescription Drug Plan will allow you to share in the prescription drug cost savings by reducing your co-payments or co-insurance by 50% when you and your physician voluntarily choose to participate. The medications that qualify for this program are: simvastatin (10, 20, 40, 80 mg), lovastatin (20, 40 mg), pravastatin (20, 40 mg), atorvastatin (20,40, 80 mg), and Crestor (10, 20, 40 mg). There is no specific enrollment in this program. Your physician writes prescriptions for qualifying medications as "take 1/2 tablet once a day." The university will pay for one pill-splitter per calendar year to assist you in splitting tablets, if you wish to participate.
The instructions for pill splitting are available from the link below for your use. We suggest you print out the instructions and take them with you to your physician’s office to discuss the program and keep them to assist you in cutting tablets.
The University of Michigan in its sole discretion may modify, amend, or terminate the benefits provided with respect to any individual receiving benefits, including active employees, retirees, and their dependents. Although the university has elected to provide these benefits this year, no individual has a vested right to any of the benefits provided. Nothing in these materials gives any individual the right to continued benefits beyond the time the university modifies, amends, or terminates the benefit. Anyone seeking or accepting any of the benefits provided will be deemed to have accepted the terms of the benefits programs and the university's right to modify, amend or terminate them.