How Long Will Publix Hold A Filled Prescription

If you have a filled prescription at a pharmacy, you may not be able to pick it up precisely when it is ready. Maybe you cannot afford it right now. If a doctor has prescribed a medication, it is essential to take it on time and as prescribed. You might be working late this week and unsure if you can make it before the pharmacy closes. How long will Publix hold your filled prescription in the meantime?

Publix will hold a filled prescription for 7-14 days before calling you for an update, depending on the state.

If this is an ongoing medication, hopefully, you have a few pills left to get you through until you can get to the pharmacy to pick up your medication. Are there pharmacies that hold prescriptions longer, and what do you do if your prescription gets back on the shelf? Keep reading to answer these questions.

How many days is your prescription filled for?

Publix has pharmacy locations in seven states. We called a Publix pharmacy in each state to find out their process for holding filled prescriptions. 

This chart lists how many days a Publix Pharmacy representative in each state told us a filled prescription is held for.

StateHolds filled prescription
Alabama10 days
Florida7-12 days
Georgia10-14 days
North Carolina14 days
Acute prescriptions (inhalers, etc.) for 10 days
South Carolina7 days
Tennessee7-9 days
Virginia 10 days

Why are pharmacies placing your prescription back on the shelf? Well, pharmacies are managing anywhere from hundreds to thousands of prescriptions weekly. Pharmacies follow strict processes and protocols for many customers because they abide by many state and federal laws and regulations. It is crucial to avoid dosage errors and to protect customers’ personal information.

If Publix cannot reach you when they try to call you by their designated timeframe, they will put the medication back on the shelf within 24 hours. For example, if they call you on the 10th day, typically, they will reshelve the medication on the 11th day. 

What options do you have?

Now that you know Publix will hold a filled prescription for about ten days, depending on the pharmacy location, what can you do if your product is reshelved? 

Here is a list of some ideas to help you:

  • Transfer your prescription to a more convenient pharmacy 
  • Have someone pick up the prescription for you
  • Check to see if your pharmacy is open late
  • Let work know you need to leave early
  • Call the pharmacy back and tell them exactly when you will pick it up
  • Sign Up for notifications on to stay informed

When you drop off your prescription with Publix for the first time, it is helpful to sign up for notifications from the pharmacy to stay informed. 

Save yourself the headache of calling Publix and go ahead and register online right away to make things easy. From the website, you can scroll down to the bottom and click Publix Pharmacy. Or you can go directly to to sign up. Add your Rx# to your patient profile and specify your communication preferences by email or text. This will inform you when your prescription is ready or if you need a refill reminder. 

Other features in your Publix Pharmacy online account are seeing which medications Publix has on file for you, which dosage, and how many refills are associated with your prescription.

You can even transfer your prescription to another Publix location or another online pharmacy retailer. By typing in the zip code of your new location, this feature will suggest nearby pharmacies. 

Ten days could provide you with enough time to plan for pick-up options. Let your place of work know you will need to leave by a certain time before your pharmacy closes and see if they can accommodate you. Publix pharmacies are known to stay open until 9 PM or even 10 PM in some locations. 

Or if you are on vacation, go ahead and get it transferred to where you are. 

Remember, Publix operates in only seven states, with its eighth state debuting in Kentucky in 2023. You can transfer your prescription from Publix to another retailer, like CVS, by going online or calling your pharmacy and making a request. 

Can someone pick up your prescription for you?

Yes, you can have someone pick up medication for you.

Depending on the type of medication you have filled, some Publix pharmacies will ask the person picking up the medication for you to provide their identification. Especially for controlled substances. Additionally, they may ask this person for your birthdate and home address.

Wal-Mart, Walgreens, and CVS also allow another person to pick up a prescription for you if they show identification. 

How long does my prescription stay on file?

At this point, you understand if a Publix pharmacist staff member cannot reach you, they will place the medication back on the shelf to be dispensed to someone else.

If Publix has reshelved your filled prescription, you can call Publix to get your prescription filled again, but there are expiration rules. Prescriptions do expire. A prescription is good for one year from the date it was written, except for controlled substances that are only good to be filled within 180 days or six months. See the chart above for reshelving timeframes.

Simply put, most prescriptions on file expire anywhere from 6-12 months from the originally written date by the prescriber. Your electronically prescribed medication or hand-written paper prescription lists an originally written date.

There are two categories for expiration: controlled substances and non-controlled substances. Prescriptions for controlled medications such as narcotics or stimulants are classified as Schedule II or C2 drugs and expire sooner.

Prescriptions for non-controlled substances, such as medications managing a chronic condition, expire after 12 months. Controlled substances, like medications for ADHD or anxiety, expire after six months. 

Important note: If you do plan on picking up your controlled substance later than the written date by the prescriber, you should know you can only refill this type of drug five times within a six-month period, whichever comes first. After either five refills or six months, you will have to call your doctor again and find out the next steps for a prescription renewal.

Do other pharmacies put prescriptions back on the shelf?

Yes, Publix is not the only pharmacy that reshelves filled prescriptions after several days. In calling a few other pharmacies, we pulled some information for you.

CVS will reshelve your prescription after 13 days if they cannot get in touch with you. Walgreens will reshelve your prescription after ten days, and Wal-Mart after nine days.

The time restrictions on prescription expiry for CVS, Walgreens, and Wal-Mart would be the same as the Publix in your state, as your state’s law determines these. A prescription’s expiration is not attributed to the specific retailer but is mandated by your state. 

Again, prescriptions usually expire for one year for non-controlled substances and six months for controlled substances.

Publix will hold a filled prescription for 10-14 before calling you. Time restrictions for pharmacies to hold a prescription on file vary state by state. If your pharmacy has filled your prescription already, they will try to call you after about a week if you haven’t picked it up yet. If they cannot reach you, they will put the medication back on the shelf according to their time restriction of up to 14 days. If the customer calls back, their prescription will remain on file for up to a year. Controlled substance prescriptions on file can expire as soon as six months.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply