Rx Open | FAQs

What is Rx Open?

Rx Open, formerly called the Pharmacy Status Reporting Tool, helps patients get access to medicine in an emergency by mapping the location of open and closed pharmacies in a disaster stricken area on the www.RxOpen.org and www.HealthcareReady.org websites. It also shows open American Red Cross shelters.

In developing Rx Open, Healthcare Ready partnered with the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs (NCPDP), as well as the pharmacy switches/clearinghouses responsible for processing pharmacy payments – eRx Network (an Emdeon company) and RelayHealth. These partnerships form the basis of Rx Open.

During a disaster situation, once a request is made to begin pharmacy status reporting, Healthcare Ready asks the pharmacy switches/clearinghouses to begin providing a daily list of all pharmacies that have billed for a prescription within the past 12 hours. The data is then merged with NCPDP’s list of all pharmacies in the US, and filtered to display the status of pharmacies in the zip codes listed within disaster declarations. Once the data is processed, Healthcare Ready displays both a graphical, searchable Google map and downloadable Excel file of all open pharmacies (green icons), pharmacies whose status is unknown (yellow icons), non-participating pharmacies (white icons), and any known closed pharmacies (red icons).

Where can I access Rx Open?

When activated for a public health emergency, Rx Open is available at either www.HealthcareReady.org or www.RxOpen.org.

Who should use Rx Open during emergencies?

  • Anyone who needs to find an open pharmacy in a disaster area
  • Emergency rooms, acute care clinics, and physicians' offices for patient referrals
  • Bio-pharmaceutical distributors and manufacturers
  • Federal, state and local emergency management and public health officials

How does Rx Open get activated?

Activation of Rx Open can be requested by state or federal officials by emailing alerts@healthcareready.org. The map can also be activated at the request of Healthcare Ready’s Coordinating Body or private sector partners.

What is the difference between the two Rx Open maps?

Healthcare Ready creates two maps when the Rx Open tool is activated, the Individual Pharmacy Map and the County Overview Map.

County Overview Map: This map provides a high level view of how a region is affected by a public health emergency.

County with 90% Pharmacies Open County with 80% - 90% Pharmacies Open County with < 80% Pharmacies Open


Individual Pharmacy Map: This map provides a list of individual pharmacies and American Red Cross shelters in the area affected by an emergency. Each pharmacy is color coded based on its operational status. When you click on a pharmacy, a box appears which contains contact information for that pharmacy.


When you click on a pharmacy contact information appears.



Will my pharmacy be open normal business hours and will they have the medicine I need during a public health emergency?

Rx Open includes not only pharmacy operating status information, but also contact information, including address and phone number. With this information, individuals can call a pharmacy to inquire about hours of operation or the supply of a specific medicine.

Can I narrow my search to find an open pharmacy in my neighborhood during a public health emergency?

Rx Open users can narrow their search by providing information such as zip code or street address within their city, county or state to locate an open pharmacy. Rx Open will show both a map and list of nearby pharmacies. Pharmacy locations and status is also provided as a downloadable Excel spreadsheet.

What does it cost to access Rx Open?

Rx Open is a free public service to anyone attempting to locate an open pharmacy during an emergency.

What else should I know about my medicines in a disaster?

Many people stock up on water, bread, and canned goods in preparation for a public health emergency, but forget about their medicine. In addition to Rx Open, Healthcare Ready has developed Rx on the Run, an online form where you can list current prescriptions and contact information for doctors. With the click of a button, a wallet size medication card can be printed with this information, which can be very helpful during a severe public health emergency. Click here for helpful preparation tips and to fill out and download your personalized Rx on the Run wallet card.