New prescription on short notice?
January 24, 2012 2:11 PM   Subscribe

So I just relocated to a new city, but need a prescription refill before I see my new primary care physician - what are my options?

In the whirl of moving, I convinced myself not to ask my doctor for new prescriptions, because the mail-order pharmacy under my old plan wouldn't have time to send me the order before my coverage from my old employer lapsed.

Now I find myself in a new city with a week's worth of birth control and my new GP's first available appointment is February 6. So, not technically an emergency, or life-threatening, but unsettling nonetheless. Is there anything I can do?
posted by deliriouscool to Health & Fitness (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've been in this situation before. In my case, the new pharmacy contacted my old PCP (which was in another state), and had their office fax over the forms verifying that I could be given more medicine.

Another time, my new PCP would call in my precriptions for me as long as I had an appointment set up with her in the future. YMMV.
posted by sugarbomb at 2:15 PM on January 24, 2012 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Are you just needing an extension of a current prescription (birth control)? If so, I've always had luck calling my old doctor, explaining the situation, and asking for a one-time refill until the date of my new doctor appointment. Then they just phone it in to my new pharmacy in my new city.
posted by stellaluna at 2:17 PM on January 24, 2012

Best answer: 2nding call your old doctor. Make sure you have the new pharmacy's fax so they can send the RX to the best place. It's not like your old Dr. will be offended you aren't using him/her anymore: You moved, no harm/no foul.
posted by Ys at 2:24 PM on January 24, 2012

Best answer: Yup, been here, too. It's simple; just call your old doctor and have them phone/fax the pharmacy.

In my experience, Walgreens is the most flexible pharmacy with regard to moving and changing doctors and so forth. They also let you renew online and will mail you your drugs for free. Win!
posted by phunniemee at 3:21 PM on January 24, 2012

If for some reason the (good) advice to contact your old doctor doesn't work out, contact the local planned parenthood affiliate. They can prescribe (and in many jurisdictions dispense) birth control.
posted by Mad_Carew at 4:15 PM on January 24, 2012

The above sounds like good advice, but a back-up option might be a drop-in clinic of some kind at your new doctor's practice. It depends, of course, on the kind of practice it is, but some clinics with plenty of staff have a weekly or bi-weekly drop-in clinic where you can wait to see a doctor without a prior appointment.
posted by yoink at 4:15 PM on January 24, 2012

You can even call your new doctor too. I had one give me a 1 month booster prescription to cover me until I could get my appointment.
posted by magnetsphere at 4:37 PM on January 24, 2012

Response by poster: I was worried that calling my old doctor would result in a huge fee, since she's now out-of-network for me, but it sounds like good advice, so that's what I'll do first thing tomorrow. Thanks for the Walgreens tip - they're very convenient for me. I'll report back!
posted by deliriouscool at 4:45 PM on January 24, 2012

deliriouscool, unfortunately for your doctor, they don't generally get to charge you anything for phone calls or prescription refills, no matter how much time they spend doing them.
posted by treehorn+bunny at 6:23 PM on January 24, 2012

That's not necessarily true, I went to a doctor's office once that charged $15/phone call. Just ask up front if you'll get charged for it. If your existing prescription has refills left on it, I think you can just transfer it to a different pharmacy.
posted by echo0720 at 6:52 PM on January 24, 2012

Response by poster: Well, those who picked "your old primary care physician will write a refill for medication you've had before" were dead on - she was off on Wednesday, but she and her nurse took care of it Thursday morning. I owe her a thank you note!
posted by deliriouscool at 1:18 AM on January 27, 2012

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