Close
ThinkAdvisor

Life Health > Health Insurance > Medicare Planning

Aetna fined $1 million for Medicare pharmacy changes

X
Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

(Bloomberg) — Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET) was fined $1 million for providing erroneous information about pharmacies covered by its Medicare drug plans this year, potentially misleading elderly and disabled customers, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

The company told Medicare patients that its plans covered medicine at 6,887 pharmacies that actually weren’t in its networks, CMS said in an April 2 letter to the company. About 2,750 people complained to the Medicare agency after discovering their pharmacies weren’t covered, in many cases after their prescriptions were rejected.

“The confusion created by errors in Aetna’s pharmacy network directory on their website led to disruption in the marketplace,” the Medicare agency’s Civil Remedies Division said in its letter.

Aetna has previously said that most pharmacies weren’t affected by the error, and that it would let its customers fill prescriptions at any pharmacy until Feb. 28.

See also: CMS warns Aetna on Medicare pharmacy rules

“These issues were swiftly resolved, and the majority of pharmacies and our members were not affected by this situation,” Aetna said in a statement.

After Medicare discovered the errors, the agency allowed Aetna customers to choose new drug plans from competing insurers. Aetna had about 1.6 million people enrolled in stand-alone Medicare drug plans at the end of the 2014, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

See also: Plans in showdown against high-cost drugs