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Local grocery stores offer discount prescriptions

A local grocery store is jumping on the discount pharmaceuticals bandwagon in an effort to make prescription medications more economical for its customers.

Kroger officials announced last week their pharmacies will be offering a variety of $4 generic prescriptions to their customers.

The more than 200 Kroger stores in the company's Atlanta division are implementing the new plan.

More than 300 drugs are available in the generic form at $4 for up to a 30-day supply, including medications from antibiotics to allergy relief. A complete list of the medications offered is available at www.kroger.com/generic.

"A lot of patients don't have insurance, and with rising health care costs, this is a good way for patients to get the medications they need," said Kroger pharmacy clinical coordinator Liza Chapman.

Pharmacists should be asking their customers if they would like the generic form, Chapman said, but customers may also ask if the discounted form of their desired prescription is available.

Having just made the one-week mark today, Chapman said thus far the in-store pharmacies have received positive feedback from their customers.

The grocery store chain seems to be following in the footsteps of a number of in-store pharmacy superstores.

Wal-Mart, Target and Publix also offer discount - and in some cases free - prescription drugs at many of their stores.

A few months ago, Publix pharmacies began offering eight different antibiotics for free to its customers. Similarly, Wal-Mart offers a variety of $4 prescriptions, and megastore competitor Target provides $4 drugs as well.

"Kroger is constantly monitoring our competition in our markets," Chapman said of joining the $4 drug trend.

Chapman said the grocery store has no plan of discontinuing the new offer at any time. She said the list will be updated regularly, and those updates can be found on the grocery store's Web site.