CARSON CITY, NV-- A local pharmacy owner says the Affordable Care Act is putting him out of business. After nearly 20 years in operation, Mike's Pharmacy in Carson City will close its doors for good on Wednesday, November 11, 2015.
Mike's Pharmacy opened in Carson City in 1997 and has been a community institution ever since.
"It is very hard to lose this business because of circumstances I had no control of," said Mike Hautekeet, owner of Mike’s Pharmacy.
He says the trouble started with the implementation of Obamacare. It wasn't the employer obligation; his employees already had insurance. Instead Hautekeet says Obamacare changed the way pharmacies are reimbursed by insurance companies.
"If my cost is too high, and they reimburse me not enough, a lot of times we lose money to fill the prescription," said Hautekeet.
For example, on a $20 prescription the patient pays a $5 copay. The insurance company should pay the remaining $15, but Hautekeet says a third party Pharmacy Benefit Manager sometimes decides the prescription is overpriced and tells the insurance company to pay out a smaller amount.
"I am going to retire and that is it," said Hautekeet.
The blow comes hard to the pharmacy's nine employees, but also patients and doctors who relied on the services for years.
"Mike has been a very good resource for us, not just for pharmacy needs but for informational needs with regards to medications and such," said Dr. Lee Van Epps, who sent patients to Mike’s Pharmacy for years.