Providing Relief to Americans, Quickly

Responding to COVID-19, Express Scripts developed a unique program serving patients who lost pharmacy coverage. (Estimated reading time: ~3 mins.)
Parachute Rx

As Americans began to lose their jobs and their insurance coverage due to COVID-19, Express Scripts acted quickly to ensure they didn’t also lose access to affordable prescription medications. In less than four weeks, we rose to the challenge in a way no other health care company could, using our unique capabilities to build and launch Express Scripts Parachute RxSM. 

In mid-April, our leadership assembled a team from across the company to develop a temporary program that would enable Americans to remain on track with their medications, allowing them to stay adherent– and healthy – until the crisis ebbed and they could return to their jobs.

Those of us in that first virtual meeting knew we were among the fortunate. We were employed and working from home. We also knew that wasn’t the case for many of our friends and neighbors. Unemployment and furloughs, already high, were projected to grow and, with them, the number of Americans without insurance coverage.

To realize our goal of helping Americans without insurance lower the cost of their prescription medications, Express Scripts Pharmacy teams focused on our core values, including collaboration, perseverance and empowerment. As the project evolved, we built upon our relationships across the industry and adapted our processes while moving as quickly as possible.

This meant our teams had to work extra hours to build this new capability. We were inspired to meet this challenge because of the need we saw all around us. They say that it takes a village, and this project was no different. Marketers, engineers, designers, content strategists, researchers, analytics specialists, legal specialists, compliance specialists, pricing managers, customer service representatives, technical product managers and business product managers worked together in meetings and chat rooms to create a product built for its time.

The unprecedented shift brought by COVID-19 has given us opportunities to demonstrate compassion and strength. This shift came at a point in our modernization journey at Express Scripts where we were able to use the technical tools we’ve developed and the customer feedback we have been gifted with over the past few years. Administered by Inside Rx, a subsidiary of Express Scripts specializing in prescription drug discount programs for self pay customers, we are able to offer Express Scripts drug pricing to those who are uninsured and not members or previous members. These patients can go online to get discounts on their prescription medications by mail from the Express Scripts Pharmacy or visit participating retail pharmacies, including Walgreens and CVS. The program is not insurance and does not require an enrollment fee or commitment to participate.

All of our lives have been uprooted by COVID-19. Our hope is that Parachute Rx can provide some peace of mind to those who have lost their prescription insurance coverage.

If you know someone who could use a program like this, please spread the word. And leave your feedback via the link at the bottom of the page, because we’re listening.


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