I doubt there is any law about mailing scripts. How you physically obtain them shouldn't matter. It's the doctor's discretion. The doc has a "prescription line" that can be used to renew medications. That doesn't make sense for 20+ of them now does it? The point is, the physical prescription is required to fill the controlled substance script. Electronic prescription transmittal is on the horizon, though.
ID may be required at pickup of the script, drop off of the script, and pickup of the medication. Mailed controlled substance scripts may require a delivery signature as well.
Rx's generally fall into 40ur catecories
1. Expires within a year (e.g. Neurontin)
2. Expires in 6 months (e.g. Fiorinal)
3. Expires immediately (e.g. Oxycontin)
4. State imposed rules: E.g. Vicodin must be written for 1 months supply and expires in 6 months.
Insurance companies are requiring that meds be prescribed for a 90 day supply except antibiotics and pain meds.
Hence, getting a 90 day supply is the norm within the limit of the laws (1-4).
The way you are stating things makes a person think all they have to do is send in a letter with a self addressed envelope and get brand new RX's!
Works for me. I was initially prescribed Oxycontin PRN (my suggestion) by my neurologist. He said to me that "YOU" can just call and pick up the prescription. Others have to come in for an appointment just as you said. This was a med that the neurologist prescribed until he left the practice and I trasitioned the med to the PCP. The neurologist always kept the PCP informed via progress notes.
If an allergist prescribes an Albuterol inhaler, does it matter who writes the prescription? Nope. If an eye doctor prescribes a "nasty eye drop" which I can use PRN, does it matter who prescribes it? Yes. PCP's shouldn't be treating eye issues.. If the eye drop is a lubercating drop, does it matter who prescribes it (allergist vs PCP)? Nope. Would a psychiatrist prescribe it? Nope. You only transition log-term therapies to the PCP. In many cases this is what happens. In my mom's case, the neurologist said, I can't do anything more for you, let the PCP treat you from now on. Info is transferred and everyone is happy. The specialist does the acute care and the PCP can sometimes do the long-term maintainence.
The method is useful when managing a lot of prescriptions. The doc polices, the pharmacy polices and the state polices.
It's important to know what may cause red flags. Scripts for the same narcotic written by different doctors will set off a red flag.
It's used with the doctor's involved consent. I.e. Is it OK to have x script used in long-term therapy prescribed by my PCP?
Is an SASE an acceptable form of renewal instructions?
For controlled substance x; for normal scripts?
The method minimizes errors and allows the doc to write the scripts on his own time. True, he could charge to do so.