Every medical aid has its own set of rules. This often leads to confusion by its members. M-KEM’s specialty Chronic Department has been established to help you circumvent the red tape enabling you to obtain your prescription without having to deal with all the ‘nitty gritty’. Medical Aids have separate benefits namely: Acute, Chronic, PMB, Oncology and Surgical Appliances. By making sure that a claim is made through the correct benefit, the members ‘ total annual benefits may be ‘stretched’. Our Chronic Department communicates with the doctor and medical aid and is often successful in having products deducted from chronic or oncology, instead of acute benefits.
Below are some brief descriptions of the terminology used:
- Acute Benefit: Acute medication is prescribed for short term use (for conditions such as sinusitis, diarrhea, tonsillitis etc.) and is usually paid for by the Medical Aid scheme according to their rules and with an annual limit. In some cases payment for acute medicine is deducted from the member’s ‘savings’.
- PMB Benefit: The PMB benefit covers medications for ongoing conditions such as blood pressure, asthma and 25 other specified conditions that MUST be subsidized by the scheme. Medical Aids usually specify a generic equivalent according to their schemes’ specific rules. There is no annual limit on these benefits.
- Chronic Benefit: Medical Aids pay for prescribed medicines, accepted by them as chronic, on a monthly basis up to a stipulated limit according to the scheme rules. This category could include products such as hay fever preparations and the scheme is not absolutely compelled to pay for them. This is unlike PMB, which is obligatory.
- Blister Pack: Blister packs are hand packed by M-KEM’s Blister Centrefor convenience and other applicable reasons. Certain people, particularly the elderly, require the medication be handed to them dose by dose. M-KEM’s Blister Pack Division packs each dose separately i.e. Monday to Sunday and/or morning, afternoon, evening etc. This is done for a nominal fee.
- Generic Medicines: Generic medicines are basically brand-name products. Generics are possibly manufactured by a different process but must include the same active ingredient in the original brand-name product. Generics are usually less expensive than the original.
How can our pharmacists help you?
Our pharmacists are equipped and eager to assist you in your choice of specific medication from a vast array of products, either original or generic. This will give you the opportunity to save money where possible.
Chronic meditation is taken routinely and is therefore predicable. M-KEM’s Chronic Medication Department has a facility whereby prescriptions can be prepared automatically 30 days after the previous refill. These are held ready for collection at the calling counter. Alternatively repeat medication can be ordered via phone, fax, email or using the M-KEM App. The medication can then be collected from M-KEM’s calling counter. An original prescription will be required if the script contains a Schedule 5 or 6 item.
In all instances M-KEM pharmacists are available to discuss your medication before, after, or at the time of collection.
Certain medical aid schemes prefer their members to obtain their chronic prescriptions from either designated providers or postal establishments. M-KEM prides itself on the quality of its service. Very often the perceived benefits of dispensing via these outlets are outweighed by the disadvantages of not having face to face communication. The benefits associated with seeing a pharmacist include him or her being able to consider any interactions or doses. They are able to answer your questions, listen to your concerns and make professional suggestions with regard to your prescription. In addition to this, the pharmacists have your medical history at hand and can therefore dispense both medicine and advice with all the information needed, at their disposal.
Fortunately, many customers prefer to pay the levy, if any, in order to attain the benefits listed above.
M-KEM’s team of pharmacists is available night and day, 365 days each year TO ASSIST YOU. It is vitally important to us that your visits to M-KEM are a convenient, enjoyable experience.