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Pharmacists announce boycott, charge insurance companies with neglecting agreements

By Ana V. Ibáñez Prieto - Oct 22,2018 - Last updated at Oct 22,2018

AMMAN — The Jordanian Pharmacists Association (JPhA) on Saturday announced its decision to start boycotting insurance companies, protesting the firms’ “lack of commitment to the contractual principles approved by the union after the agreed deadline for their implementation”.

The decision came as a result of an emergency meeting held by the JPhA with the division of pharmacy owners and committees, where members agreed on the actions to be taken against insurance companies not abiding with previously signed agreements, JPhA President Zeid Kilani, told The Jordan Times during an interview on Saturday. 

“The agreed principles were expected to regulate contractual fees and prescriptions in the interest of all, but unfortunately, the insurance companies play a more powerful role against most pharmacies, and force them to engage in policies against the agreement,” Kilani charged. 

“Several insurance companies have threatened pharmacies with removing them from the insurance plan in the event they reject higher contractual fees, while others have stopped directing chronic patients to a certain set of pharmacies for financial reasons,” he continued, warning that “this is a malpractice leading to monopoly”.

Concerning the measures to be undertaken by JPhA, Kilani noted that the union will stop accepting insurance forms from certain companies not abiding by the agreements previously signed.  

The pharmacist highlighted that only one company will start being targeted as a primary measure, noting that a letter was forwarded to the firm on Sunday and that the name of company will be announced after a grace period of 48 hours if no actions are taken in response to the protest. 

In parallel, the union will start submitting a statistical form for all pharmacies to report on the behaviour of insurance companies in order to take further necessary measures, Kilani noted, stressing that “actions will continue until we get all insurance companies to abide by the signed agreements”.

“The union will deal rationally with all violating insurance companies and provide them with a period of time to correct the situation,” he continued, noting that some companies are “already in the process of abiding by the regulations, but held back by other companies in the field”.  

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