About Phil

Published on: May 4, 2017

By partnering with top-rated, independent, locally owned pharmacies in all major states, Phil is an online prescription refill service that will fill and deliver medication right to your doorstep every month.

The Phil website tells us that delivery is free and you'll likely have the same copay as with your existing pharmacy. Just take 30 seconds to set up your account and add your existing prescriptions, after which your old pharmacy will be contacted, and all the paperwork will be handled for you.

Then, using the Phil app, you’ll be able to schedule when your medications arrive (and track them), order vacation refills, etc. And if you have any questions during the process, your new pharmacist will answer them over the phone.

Never waiting in line again for a prescription? Certainly sounds appealing, doesn’t it? Or, perhaps you’re responsible for managing your family’s medications, including for your aging parents, and are interested in Phil’s convenience.

Whatever brought you here, you’re looking to find out if Phil represents “smarter prescription refills,” as claimed in the promo video. To start you on your journey, let’s dive right in and take a closer look at how the service works.

How Does the Phil Delivery Service & App Work?

Signing up for Phil’s prescription delivery service starts by entering your personal information and current pharmacy details (including special instructions or drug allergies) into the website, indicating whether or not insurance will pay for your medications, and then clicking Process order. You can add as many prescriptions as you like.

From there, Phil will assign you to a top-rated independent pharmacy by taking into consideration several factors such as:

  • Distance from your location,
  • Medication inventory
  • Volume of prescriptions filled by the pharmacy

Your new pharmacy will contact your doctor about your prescription, which will take about 1-2 hours. If your doctor needs to speak with you, the company will inform you immediately.

Once your prescription is received, you’ll receive a notification to approve the copay (or the medication price if you’re paying 100 percent out of pocket).

Then, your prescription will be shipped in discreet pharmacist-sealed packaging, without any visible personal or medical information, with an arrival time by the end of the next business day. No signature is required.

Once everything’s up and running, your account can be entirely managed, including package tracking, through Phil’s iOS and Android apps.

Phil’s iOS app offers the ability to track individual medications, including the next refill date, price, status, and who the medication is for.

While the Phil website doesn’t explicitly state which states the delivery service operates in, a recent Business Insider article indicated that the company is expanding rapidly: “In three months, the 25-employee company scaled from serving one state, California, with just a handful of pharmacy partners, to 18 states, covering two-thirds of the US population.”

By the end of June 2017, the article states Phil will cover more than 90 percent of the national population.

Important note: In addition to where you live, another factor to consider is that Phil isn’t able to fill prescriptions for any Schedule II to V substances (e.g. Adderall and Xanax), nor any Schedule II substances in the states of AZ, CA, FL, IL, IN, LA, MI, MO, NJ, NY, OH, PA, TX and WA.

They also can’t fill specialty medications like “Egrifta, Humira, Serostim, and Reclast.”

How Much Does the Phil Prescription Delivery Service Cost?

According to their website, Phil accepts most insurance plans (including Medicare Part D and Medi-Cal, although they can’t accept closed network plans, such as Kaiser) and guarantees the exact same copay as your current pharmacy. In rare instances, this might not be the case, at which point they’ll contact you for approval.

Partner pharmacies pay to use Phil’s software, and they only charge exactly what your insurance company mandates.

If you don’t have insurance, the company promises that they’ll quote you the lowest price they’re able to obtain.

From a payment perspective, any major credit card information entered on the Phil website is securely stored with Braintree, their payment provider. You can also pay using a flexible spending account (FSA).

It’s illegal for Phil to accept returns on medications once they’ve left the pharmacy, although they can refund any orders you cancel beforehand. If you’re not 100 percent happy with the service, Phil will transfer your prescriptions back to your old pharmacy.

If you have any questions, the company's licensed support team can be reached at 855-977-0975 or via the contact form on their website.

Are There Any Customer Reviews For Phil?

Between iTunes and Google Play, the Phil app had several dozen reviews and an average rating of about 3.7 stars at the time of our research. There, many seemed to appreciate the service’s ease of use, convenience, and solid customer support.

On the other hand, most complaints referenced the service, and not necessarily the app, who often complained about mishaps (medications, insurance, etc.). When related to the app, most complaints revolved around general bugginess.

Obviously, we’re only reporting the facts and not insinuating that you’ll experience any of the same.

From a company perspective, Phil, Inc. is based out of San Francisco, CA and was founded in 2015 by CEO Deepak Thomas. According to their website, Phil was created out of the belief that “we should not have to suffer through an inconvenient, stressful and archaic experience to ensure a consistent supply of our medications.”

The company held an A Better Business Bureau rating, with no closed complaints, as of 5/2/17.

Before founding Phil, Deepak worked as Head of Product & Mobile Growth for Shutterfly, General Manager for eBay, as well as Director of Mobile for Match.com.

Are There Other Medication Delivery Services Like Phil?

Getting prescriptions through the mail isn’t exactly groundbreaking stuff. In fact, writing for GoodRx, Elizabeth David tells us that “More than one-third of respondents in a 2013 Consumer Reports survey got at least some of their prescriptions through a mail-order pharmacy during the previous year.”

In other words, lots of patients are receiving their medications through the mail.

These include not only third-party businesses like Phil, OptumRx, PillPack, GetMyRx.com, and Express Scripts, either, but also traditional pharmacies like CVS and Walgreens home delivery.

In fact, many insurance companies offer some version of a mail service, such as United Healthcare, Aetna, and Humana. As a result, if you have health insurance, it might be worthwhile giving them a call to see what (if anything) they provide.

Potential Advantages & Disadvantages with Phil

Overall, you’ll find that many of these services offer the same core features, including free, direct-to-door delivery, automatic refills, contacting your doctor when necessary, and trained support staff (including medication counseling).

Comparatively, perhaps the biggest advantage is that they’ll work directly with your insurance company, although if this is your biggest concern, working directly through your carrier’s prescription delivery service might be the most straightforward option.

On the other hand, we think one of Phil’s biggest current disadvantages is the limited number of pharmacies they work with. As an example, GetMyRx.com (perhaps the closest rival) already operates in 3,000 zip codes across 35 states, so it seems they have some catching up to do.

Here Are Some Tips for Prescription Services

Regardless of the service you go through, just make sure that you communicate clearly, thoroughly, and frequently with the company, which can help reduce errors. After all, there are a lot of moving parts involved with prescription medications.

Another potential downside to prescription delivery services in general (not specifically to this service) is that patients no longer have a personal relationship with their pharmacist. Although, since Phil will be filling your prescriptions at a local independent pharmacy, getting the personal service you need could just be a phone call away.

And while the type of packaging used in prescription deliveries will help prevent most damage, keep in mind there’s always a chance it could be lost or stolen, leaving you without your medication.

Finally, while many customers reported that they started using Phil with a single “test” prescription, if you find that the service works for you, it’s a good idea to go ahead and transfer all your prescriptions over. This way, your new pharmacist can have all your information in one place and can advise of any potentially dangerous interactions.

Our Final Thoughts About Phil

Although they’ve been in business since 2015, Phil currently only serves a limited market, with swift expansion expected throughout 2017. But if you live in an area where the company offers their services, the fact that they assign you to a local independent pharmacy and deal with your insurance company seems to meaningfully differentiate them from much of the competition.

Does this necessarily mean they’re right for you? As long as you don’t take specialty medications or anything classified as Schedule II through V substance, the only way to find out for sure is by giving this service a try.

After all, they're completely free, and if they're not to your liking, the company claims they'll switch you back to your previous pharmacy immediately. So, you might not have much more to lose than some of your time for giving them a try.

What did you think about Phil’s prescription delivery service? Did they provide convenience, or did you return to your traditional pharmacy? Help others make more informed decisions by writing a review below.

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8 Customer Reviews for Phil

Average Customer Rating: 3.4
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 4 4 star: 1 3 star: 0 2 star: 0 1 star:  3
Bottom Line: 50% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-8 of 8
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  • Incompetent

    Every single time I've interacted with customer service I have received different answers. Enough so that I directly asked them about automatic charges, as I don't always have funds in my account and they assured me I would have to ok every transaction before it happened. Then I received an automatic charge that almost cost me an overdraft.

    When I again talked to customer service, they stated that's how it's always set up. Then when I mentioned the previous correspondence I get an an "Oh well" attitude, "sorry you were misinformed." After having my prescriptions sent back to my Safeway pharmacy I found that they are actually much cheaper than Phil. Less than half the price actually. Phil is nothing but an incompetent scam.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Very disappointed

    • Indiana,
    • Aug 18, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    This might be a matter of mismanagement and just choosing poor outsourcing, but the customer support is horrendous, and the service is questionable at best. Prescriptions were not delivered that they said were delivered in the quantity they noted. There were constant issues with customer support contact (e.g., hang ups, no answer), and the customer support in at least some instances simply dismissed the issues instead of addressing them to work toward resolution.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Excellent service!

    I had been walking to the pharmacy and going old school, but I am so happy with this home delivery pharmacy! I know exactly what's coming and no more worries. Thanks very much guys! I am really happy not to have to chase down refills and get personal service behind the scenes. No more sweat walking!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Exceeding expectations

    • California,
    • Aug 16, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    Phil is a great service that bridges a broken system of pharmacy; not having to wait in line, call my doctor and wait for service. Phil is a white glove service that has redefined the way pharmaceuticals are services and delivered.

    A great service for patients and doctors alike.

    Thanks Phil.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    Comments (3)
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    • Aug 17, 2017

      Regan Bozman,

      Hi R. Jones,

      Thanks for the great review and we're happy to hear that you've enjoyed your time with Phil!

      We noticed you mentioned, "Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend." May we ask how we can do better to perfect your experience and have you recommend us to your friends and family?

    • Aug 25, 2017

      Teresa Sadorus

      Hi R. Jones,

      I'm reading your comments, trying to make a decision here and I was pretty persuaded to sign up to your last statement. So now I just have to ask. Why wouldn't you tell your friends about this service? I am curious.

    • Aug 26, 2017

      Travis Kuest

      This website has the worst possible customer support. Each time you interact, you will get completely different answers. This last episode (there have been many) they assured me that I would have to "ok" every transaction and nothing would come out my checking automatically, then an automatic transaction occurred and they said, "that's the way it is."

      Then, the back and forth emails were just plain ridiculous. I had my prescriptions transferred back to Safeway Pharmacy and they were less than half the price I was being charged at Phil's. It troubles me that such incompetence exists at this place. I'm wondering how easily my information could be corrupted or stolen from this place. I will be submitting a complaint to my state to have these guys looked into. There is way too much incompetence.

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Excellent service

    These people make their service almost too good to be true. Their staff that I spoke with via phone and email were completely professional and helpful to me. If you are tired of long lines at the pharmacy, you should give them a try. The sign up is simple, quick and free. All you do is check your mailbox. This is a wonderful service.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Worked for my daily meds

    • Orlando, FL,
    • Aug 16, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    I was tired of being asked to come back by the Walgreens pharmacy staff. Half the time they didn't have my meds ready. They send me a text saying meds are ready and only one of them is ready for pick up. Then they blame doctors and insurance but don't contact them until I show up at the store.

    The Phil website keeps me posted if there is a delay with doctor or insurance. They chase down insurance and get me refills from doctors without me having to do anything. My meds show up on time every month, and I don't pay anything more. They don't do painkillers, and I have chronic pain, so that is why I'm giving one star less.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Wonderful

    Phil is great. Always very good and fast response to any questions. Very satisfied with everything. I know exactly where my meds are and even know when they arrive. Best thing ever.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 6 people found this review helpful

    I was scammed.

    In my opinion, this is a scam to get your credit card information. I used this service once and on the very first time I used it my credit card was charged repeatedly. What's worse is that I cannot delete my credit card from the app. I now have had to contact the credit card company to start my card from any future payments. My credit card company is also assisting me in trying to recoup the money that was taken out of my account without authorization.

    Be very aware of what this company really is.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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