After months of filling my prescriptions, with the usual difficulty described by others, but filling them, I had a really terrible customer-service and pharmacy experience, wherein Optum reps lied and misrepresented both themselves and their policies. I spoke with Shanna Smith (714) 825-6832 of the president's office escalated customer service and it was resolved as she herself said, "they call the pharmacist area "the cage", ours should be in bigger cages."
But, the following month, only minutes after calling customer-service and being told all was well and I would get my scripts on time in two days -- I received a call from Ms. Smith who was extremely aggressive in sharp contract to her previous helpful tone, and she read me a statement saying that Optum had sent a note to my doctor "dictating" their policy of requiring a prescription for pain medications to contain 80% extentended release medication and no more than 20% immediate release.
I was in shock, at age 62, having broken my neck in the service of our nation and with several very serious resultant medical conditions, being informed at 5 PM on Friday that my prescription was being stopped, when everyone knows it is timed to be refilled only as it runs out, basically means that OptumRx was informing me to prepare to go into withdrawal, as there was not time to replace the medicines with another vendor before that would happen! [Note, I have a perfect record in every way, I take only a small dosage and have been praised by many doctors as a"perfect" full-compliance patient.]
The president's office was unable to explain further and refused to answer any question, but only red their short statement over and over. Then after an hour on hold, they conferenced in a pharmacist who said that "these medicines are impossible to get in Florida, Optum is your only option, follow the policy we "dictate" (they really use this word) or try to find another place to get your pain medicine, I doubt you will be successful." When I tried to ask any questions, again all he did was read a short script about the policy the "dictated". When I formally requested his pharmacy license number, he refused as did the president's office, even though state law requires he provide it.
Just a week earlier a pharmacist also with OptumRx had explained that for many patients short-acting pain medications are far better than extended release because they can be taken only when needed, thereby far reducing the required daily dosage and also significantly reducing serious side effects. But now, contrary to their own pharmacists' professional advice, OptumRx was "dictating" to me and to my very highly credentialed doctor only to prescribe long-acting medications!
Aside from the issue of dictating to prescribing doctors, why, after months of filling the medication on a regular monthly basis, did OptomRx deny the medication at the very last minute? What could they not have begun thirty days or even sixty days earlier. Why are they doing it in a manner tailored to put a bona-fide patient into withdrawal?! And why is their manner so aggressive and abusive of a sick patient, on the phone, with no explanation.
It all makes no sense at all. This is a company owned directly by United Health Care (regardless of their denying this) and really suggests that both organizations should not be in business in the United States.
Product or Service Mentioned: Optumrx Prescription Refill.