Dale Bartel, owner of Valley Pharmacy in Cherokee, spoke to the Cherokee County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday concerning the use of a Naco Discount Drug Card that is being endorsed by the supervisors.
At a previous meeting, the supervisors discussed the card and didn't see any negatives to it. The card provides discounts on pharmacy drugs for those not already covered by a prescription insurance plan. Supervisors have been personally handing out cards.
Bartel said the discount card provides misleading information. While there is a claim of savings that could average 20 percent, the actual savings is 5 to 10 percent, according to Bartel.
He said that the discount is totally paid by the pharmacy, as is the case for insurance company discounts. The way the pharmacies are required to honor these discounts is through pharmacy benefits managers (PBMs) who are able to use there clout through contractual arrangements with pharmacies.
Bartel said that those who use the card are on a roster and are then solicited by mail order drug companies, taking away business from local pharmacies.
"This is not good for local pharmacies and not good for the economy of the county," Bartel said.
The board authorized the signing of a contract with Godberson Smith Construction of Ida Grove for the Mill Creek Bridge construction project at $654,421.
Tom Jenness, the Cherokee County weed commissioner, presented his annual report. He said that he operated within his budget this year and anticipates needing about the same amount for chemicals next year.