Law will clear up costs of drugs

Pharmacists can discuss payments, cash price

Anna Wolfe

Mississippi Clarion Ledger USA TODAY NETWORK

If you have a copay, chances are you've overpaid for a prescription at some point.

That's because an insurance copay can be more expensive than the cash price of the drug — more expensive than if you'd had no insurance and paid out of pocket.

And because of 'gag clauses' in contracts between pharmacies and the insurance claims payers, you'd never know this. Until now.

In a bill Gov. Phil Bryant signed in March, which will take effect in July, insurers can no longer prevent pharmacists from telling patients whether their copay is higher than the cash cost of their medication.

A couple of weeks ago, Valerie Mc-Clellan went to the Kroger pharmacy in that this will never happen again. We are trying to make a difference.'

Lester Hailey owns Beemon Drugs.



George and Toni Kersh were in the gallery, along with family, friends and supporters, including Rankin County Judge Tom Broome.

The Mississippi State track and field athlete was killed in May — two days after graduating from MSU.

The Pearl native is the daughter of George Kersh, a world-class runner who is known as one of the best in Mississippi history.

'I will always remember Kaelin by her incredible smile,' MSU track and field coach Steve Dudley said in a statement after the accident. 'Kaelin always had a positive attitude and this was contagious to everyone around her. Kaelin was a member of the most successful era of women's track and field at Mississippi State and that was largely due to the tight bond between her and her teammates.

'We all loved her, and Kaelin will remain in our hearts forever. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Kersh family and to the other families involved.'

The fatal crash occurred at Mayhew Road and Mississippi 182 in Starkville. Kersh and friends had been out celebrating their graduation. Kersh was in the backseat when the Toyota Corolla was struck by a Mississippi Highway Patrol SUV. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

The accident report said the trooper, who was apparently answering a call about a car that had run off the road, was doing 68 mph in a 45 mph zone. An internal investigation reportedly put the speed at 73 mph on impact, but in November, the Kershes said their lawyer told them the dash cam showed the trooper was going 100 mph and about 89 mph at impact.

Noel Collier, the driver of the vehicle Kersh was in, told the Clarion Ledger earlier this year that she stopped at the intersection and 'didn't see any lights' before turning onto the highway.

George Kersh said his wife led the effort to get the law passed and he is thankful for her effort.

Toni Kersh said what she wants the public to remember about her daughter is her smile and that she loved everybody no matter who they were in society.

Retired NFL player and MSU graduate Glen Collins said Kersh, who was his godchild, was a class act. Collins started a scholarship at MSU in honor of Kersh.

Thomas Matthews of Jackson, a relative of Kersh, said the law will help ensure that everybody has to follow the same rules and regulations, including law enforcement.

“I will always remember Kaelin by her incredible smile. Kaelin always had a positive attitude and this was contagious to everyone around her.”

Steve Dudley

MSU track and field coach

Source: The Clarion-Ledger

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