Apartment fire victims struggle to get emergency prescriptions filledFargo, ND (WDAY TV) - When people rushed out of that burning apartment building, they not only left pets behind, they had to leave life-saving medication in their apartments. But when some of those tenants tried to get emergency prescriptions filled, Blue Cross Blue Shield and its processing partner refused, which has infuriated pharmacists and their patients.
By: Kevin Wallevand, WDAY
Susie Nyberg: “I look at my daughter and I go, we have to get prescriptions and we don't have anything and we are both on medications.”
Susie Nyberg isn't sure what is left in her apartment. She is hoping the family heirlooms survived the fire at the gutted out complex.
“We were on the east end.”
But complicating everything is the fact BCBS last night would not authorize an emergency over-ride to get her prescriptions filled.
SUSIE NYBERGFIRE VICTIM: “He was on the phone for 45 minutes begging them to get the over-ride to get the prescriptions filled and they said absolutely not.”
Her pharmacist Chad Nelson stayed late at the store, on the line with Blue Cross Blue Shield trying to get them to authorize the prescription for Susie and her daughter.
CHAD NELSON/METRO DRUG OWNER: “Emergency circumstance and in emergency you should have protocol in place to be able to get these patients these medicines.”
“It is frustrating you watch your house burn and then to find out you can't get that little bit of help you need.”
The concern of Susie and her pharmacist, making sure BCBS gets this ironed out now so that other people in the same situation don't get the same treatment.
“So you don't have one more worry on top of everything else.”
After customer complaints overnight, BCBS began authorizing prescriptions, but there was much frustration over the fact that people had to wait too long in a horrible situation before getting their attention.
Prime Therapeutics out of the Twin Cities processes the prescription program for the Blues. Blue Cross Blue Shield officials late this afternoon said it is looking into and researching what and why the re-fill refusals happened.