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Posted on: March 30, 2023

Understand Your Benefits – Prescriptions and Prior-Authorization

Prescription prior authorization

Having a good health plan is of no use if you don’t understand the plan's features when it’s really important. Take time to know more about the City’s health coverage. In the meantime, let’s delve into prescriptions and prior-authorization (sometimes referred to as pre-authorization).

Have you ever gone to the pharmacy and not been able to get your medication?  Many times this is due to a lack of “prior-authorization” meaning the pharmacy needs additional documentation from your medical provider. 

What is Prior-Authorization?
Prior-authorization (PA) is a cost-saving initiative of the City’s prescription drug benefit plan that ensures the appropriate use of certain medications. This program is designed to prevent the improper prescribing and use of certain drugs that may not be the best choice for a given health condition. 

What types of medications might require a PA?

  • Brand name medications with a generic available
  • Specialty medications
  • Medications with a lower-cost, equally effective alternatives available
  • Medications that should only be used for certain health conditions
  • Medications with stricter FDA guidelines on quantity, age and diagnosis 

At the pharmacy and unable to get your prescription? Call Southern Scripts before leaving the store to learn the reason and hopefully resolve the issue on-site.  If you have questions about the Southern Scripts prescription plan, call 800-710-9341, email or visit

Manage your prescriptions via the SouthernScripts Mobile App!

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