Schenectady County Employee Prescription Drug Costs Drop More than 40% Over 13 Years. 2018 Prescription Costs Nearly $2 Million Lower than in 2005

Prescription Drug Savings

Schenectady County Legislature Chairman Anthony Jasenski announced today that Schenectady County’s ground-breaking Schenectady Meds I Prescription Drug Program costs 40.28 percent less than the County spent in 2005.

“The first full year for this landmark plan was 2005,” said Chair Jasenski.  “While nationwide prescription drug prices have gone up more than fifty percent since then, Schenectady County has reduced costs by more than forty percent.”

Schenectady County was the first county in the State to adopt an incentivized Canadian and U.S. mail order Rx plan in December 2004, and since then has constantly revised and improved the program in cooperation with its unions.  In addition to incentivized Canadian and U.S. mail order prescriptions, reforms have included step therapy, dispensing quantity management, and competitive bidding of pharmacy benefit management services.

“We have achieved these savings through a cooperative problem-solving approach with our unions CSEA, 1199 SEIU, and Council 82 AFSCME,” continued Chair Jasenski.”This demonstrates once again that working together works.  Both the employees and the taxpayers win through this cooperative effort.”

In 2005, Schenectady County employee prescription drug costs were $4,885,265.  In 2018, Schenectady Meds I cost county tax payers $2,917,002, a cost reduction of $1,968,191.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (, nationwide drug prices have gone up 50.86 percent from January 2005 through December 2018.