State, pharmacy fight hits patients

SEATTLE - Walgreens has told Washington state officials that it will no longer fill prescriptions for new Medicaid patients as of April 16 because it isn't being reimbursed enough by the state.

The Deerfield, Ill,-based drugstore chain, which has 121 pharmacies in Washington, says it will continue to serve its existing Medicaid patients, but can’t take on additional losses because of reductions in the state’s payments.

State Medicaid director Doug Porter told The Seattle Times that Medicaid recipients should be able to easily find another pharmacy, and the state will help them locate one if needed.