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Utah To Pay Public Employees To Fill Prescriptions In Mexico

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Tijuana's Border

To save money on drugs, Utah is offering to cover travel expenses for public employees willing to go fill certain high-cost prescriptions in Mexico.

Salt Lake City-based PEHP, which covers 160,000 public employees and family members, is offering plane tickets to San Diego, transportation to Tijuana, and a $500 cash payout to patients who need certain drugs for multiple sclerosis, cancer and autoimmune disorders.

PEHP Clinical Operations Director Travis Tolley says that cost would be "pretty small in comparison to the difference between U.S. prices and Mexico prices."

PEHP is offering pharmacy tourism benefits for about a dozen drugs for which the price disparity between countries is vast. For example, Avonex, which treats MS, costs about $6,700 for a 28-day supply in the U.S., but about $2,200 through PEHP's contracted clinic in Tijuana.