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Pharmacy Patient Issues

What is Patient Steering?

"Patient steering" happens when a health plan or pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) refuses to allow a patient to receive their prescription medication from a pharmacy or provider of the patient's own choosing. The patient may receive a notice via postal mail or email communication threatening denial of coverage, in the doctor's office when they need a physician-administered medication, or at the pharmacy counter when they attempt to fill a prescription.

Patient steering negatively affects Floridians by:

  • Hurting cancer, transplant, rheumatology, and other patients who require intravenous medications through delays of prescribed life-saving treatment;

  • Hurting high-risk and senior patients - forcing them to travel long distances to obtain their medication from a PBM-owned pharmacy, or to endure damaged/delayed receipt of their medication through forced mail-order;

  • Driving up prescription drug prices by forcing patients to fill their prescriptions at pharmacies owned/affiliated with out-of-state pharmacy benefit manager/insurance corporations, which in many cases charge the patient's plan higher prices for the same medication;

  • Harming local communities by forcing pharmacies' patients away from them - which decreases a town's ability to sustain these crucial healthcare small businesses, and sends millions of local tax dollars out of state.

The practice of "patient steering" is only one of many ways that PBMs and their health insurance counterparts fleece Floridian patients, pharmacies, healthcare providers, taxpayers, and communities.


For more information on PBM anticompetitive practices and what you can do visit

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