It is one of the tranquil ways to enjoy the Valley Floor. Yes, there may be some sections which are overly crowded to experience a oneness with nature, such as along the trail to the base of Lower Yosemite Falls,
and Bridalveil Falls
~post by Jeff~
It is hard to imagine why anyone would not support our troops and vets. I am disabled and I am also sick. It is hard for me to get around sometimes and it seems like I am taking medication before and after every meal. My wife is not well either although she is in better condition than me. We are a military family for three generations. My wife and I both are retired military, one of our son's graduated from the Naval Academy and is still serving, and our daughter retired last year with her 25 years. My wife and I are fortunate that both of our children and grandchildren live close by to not only see after us a bit but it is the time in life when our time is spent with family. The story I have to tell is not a happy story but it is true. It is time I feel to speak out so let me begin.
We live in a medium size town and our entire family buy's all of our medications from Walgreens. We love the 24 hour pharmacy services since many times after watching the grandchildren or if I need to make one of my many trips to the ER we can go to the pharmacy anytime to pick up our medications. Walgreen's offers more 24-hour and drive thru pharmacies than any other pharmacy in the country. In our town there is a large factory and many employees who work seconds and thirds can visit the pharmacy before or after work since the Walgreens is located in a central part of town. Around Christmas Shirley, I call her my personal pharmacist and she calls me her "most favorite customer" along with my wife, daughter, son, our neighbor, and everyone who faces her bright always willing to help smiling face, told me, "Walgreens and Express Scripts contract expires at midnight December 31, 2011 after a long contract negotiation ended with an unsuccessful outcome. The end result is anyone with insurance managed by Express Scripts, which includes Tricare which is the military health and prescription drug program for the military will be forced to drive across town several miles away in congested traffic to meet their "we close at 8:00 PM deadline" or buy medications online. I asked her if Walgreens just wanted more money and she said it was not a money issue since Walgreen's offered to hold rates flat to avoid any major breaks in services and did not increases. Express Scripts wanted to define brand and generic drugs and proposed to slash the reimbursement rates to levels below the industry average cost to provide each prescription. In fact Express Scripts itself stated clients will not see any significant savings from excluding Walgreens. In fact, costs may even go up without Walgreens because Walgreen's is so competitive because their pricing and additional savings by dispensing less expensive generic drugs more often than other pharmacies, and savings through 90-day supplies of medications at the retail pharmacies versus three, 30-day refills.
The large factory employees will have the same situation because their employer group plan is managed by Express Scripts. It is funny she said a Walgreens proprietary survey of 823 executives and managers for pharmacy benefit decisions found that 82 percent of employers said that they would not exclude Walgreens for less than 5 percent savings on their total pharmacy budget.
Sixty percent of employers would not exclude Walgreens for less than 10 percent savings, and 21 percent would not exclude Walgreens from their network regardless of the amount of savings. These findings on employer attitudes are consistent with recent research published by several leading equity research analysts.Employers value having Walgreens as a pharmacy option for their employees, but Express Scripts took that choice away.
We finished our conversation and she gave me their website and encouraged me to read it for myself. The website address is: http://bit.ly/y6RTpL.
I went home and looked up the information myself finding Express Scripts could offer substantial savings to its clients by promoting 90-day refills at retail pharmacies, but it conflicts with its own mail order 90-day prescription business which brings in huge profits. Most pharmacies have broke even or lost money in the last few years while Express Scripts has made money more than two times the average for the health care business. The sad part is this puts our military directly in the middle. During negotiations, Walgreens took a bold step offering to negotiate a separate contract with a strict guarantee that Walgreen's prices would match or beat the average costs per adjusted prescription of all other pharmacies in the Tricare network. Walgreens did this in an effort to prevent our country’s military personnel from being caught in the middle. These efforts were rejected.
Walgreen's does not give up trying to serve their customers trying to minimize the disruption by offering a special discount on it's annual membership for its Prescription Savings Club at Walgreens. An individual can join during a special
January promotion for only $5 reduced from $20, or $10 for a family membership originally $35. Members receive savings on more than 8,000 brand name drugs and more than 400 generic medications. More than 400 generics are available with a three-month supply for less than $1 a week. In an additional effort to make this transition as seamless as possible Walgreen's has a national plan to help customers continue to use Walgreens as much as possible and take care of as many as possible since they are forced to leave Walgreens in order to use their in-network coverage.
Check with your pharmacist to see if you are impacted by looking on the back of your insurance card to see if it has Express Scripts name. If so, then you may be affected.