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Verizon releases mobile app that finds cheapest meds

The app also warns of possible harmful drug interactions

Verizon Wireless and Medco Health Solutions today released a mobile application that guides BlackBerry and Android smartphone users to locations where they can purchase the lowest-cost prescription drugs.

Verizon said the new Medco Pharmacy mobile app can also identify potentially harmful drug interactions based on Medco members' medication history.

Verizon's Medco Pharmacy mobile app

Medco, which provides pharmacy services to more than 65 million customers, said its pharmacy mobile app is available for download in V CAST Apps. It provides information about out-of-pocket costs for any prescription drug and lower-cost options specific to a person's prescription drug plan, even if a patient is being treated by several doctors or fills prescriptions at many different pharmacies.

According to Medco, half a million prescriptions that have a lower-cost option are written every day for its members, "illustrating the enormous potential savings opportunities that exist."

The Medco Pharmacy mobile app is built on Medco's My Rx Choices prescription savings and patient safety program, which was launched online in 2006. To use the app, patients must first register at the Medco website . Once registered, their medication history and drug plan is made available online.

The pharmacy app consists of three key features: My Rx Choices, which delivers on-demand, personalized out-of-pocket costs for any prescription medication and lower-cost options; My Medicine Cabinet, which allows users to view medications they're on, set reminders for themselves or others in their household and alerts them to possible drug interactions; and Prescription ID Card, which offers online access to a member's prescription drug card.

"Wireless devices are a part of the lifestyle as we know it today, and millions of people rely on their BlackBerry and Androidsmartphones for instant information," Mike Ross, vice president of healthcare sales for Verizon Wireless, said in a statement. "Reliability is paramount to not only medical information, but for a network too."

Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed . His e-mail address is lmearian@computerworld.com .

Read more about health care in Computerworld's Health Care Topic Center.

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