August 20, 2008
On August 8, 2008, the Department issued Operations Order No. 36, entitled, Medical Division "Line of Duty Prescription Program" for Active Uniformed Members of the Service (a copy of which is linked from here), which announced the implementation of the Department's new line of duty prescription drug program, and details the procedures for obtaining line of duty prescription drugs from participating pharmacies utilizing a new paper prescription card and the member’s NYPD identification card.
The Department is statutorily obligated to pay for line of duty prescription drugs under Administrative Code section 12-127. However, as you may be aware, for some time, the City was not fulfilling its obligations under the statute. Accordingly, the PBA filed a grievance in 2006 to enforce the statute and a side letter agreement to the collective bargaining agreement that specifically acknowledges the City's obligation to pay for line of duty prescription drugs pursuant to the statute. In 2007, an arbitrator issued a decision in favor of the PBA and directed the City to cease and desist from refusing to pay for line of duty prescription drugs submitted to it by PBA members. Consequently, to fill its statutory obligations and comply with the award, the Department created the new prescription drug program.
We urge all police officers who require prescription drugs due to a line of duty injury/illness to utilize the new program by following the directions contained in Operations Order 36. By doing so, we will ensure that the burden for payment appropriately rests with the Department rather than with the member in the form of co-pays, or the Health and Welfare Fund's prescription drug program. The benefit of utilizing the new program is that police officers will not be subjected to any out of pocket expenses for co-pays and the Health and Welfare Funds will be spared the expense of paying for prescription drugs that the City has an absolute obligation to pay.
A copy of the paper prescription card, which contains all telephone numbers for assistance regarding the program, is attached as Appendix "A" to Operations Order 36. Should you experience any problems with the Department's new program, please contact your PBA delegate.
Patrick J. Lynch