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Rural–Urban Disparities in Access to Medicaid-Contracted Pharmacies in Washington State, 2017


Of the 6,203 pharmacies on a list obtained from the Washington State Department of Health, 3,429 were excluded as having pending, closed, or terminated licenses; 904 were excluded because they had addresses outside Washington State, and 6 were excluded because they were duplicate listings. An additional 719 pharmacies were excluded because they were nonretail pharmacies. In total, 1,145 pharmacies were included in the final sample.

Figure 1.

Flowchart of selection of pharmacies for study sample, Washington State, 2017.

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The number of Medicaid-contracted pharmacies per zip code across Washington State ranged from zero to 12. The density of Medicaid-contracted pharmacies varied from zero to 53.48 per 10,000 people. Medicaid-contracted pharmacies were distributed throughout Washington, with larger proportions surrounding cities.

Figure 2.

Geographic patterns of Medicaid-contracted pharmacies in Washington State, 2017, showing the number of pharmacies (top) and the number of pharmacies per 10,000 residents (bottom) in Washington State zip codes that contract with at least 1 Medicaid insurance plan. Inserts show the greater Seattle/Olympia area.

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Page last reviewed: August 20, 2020