7 Simple Ways to Save Money on Prescriptions
Over 131 million people (66% of American adults) use prescription drugs.
Many of us need prescriptions to control chronic ailments, ease temporary pain, and promote long life. But it’s no secret that prescriptions, especially if you rely on multiple, don’t come cheap.
Hoping to save money on prescriptions but not sure where to begin? Don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place. Here are seven tips to help you.
1. Ask About Generic Medications
Not sure how to save money on prescriptions?
Luckily, by law, generics must contain the same active ingredients as branded drugs and you’ll find big savings on the ones available. Big brands charge more because of the lengthy drug development process but when their patent expires, other manufacturers can produce the same medication.
Let your healthcare provider know that you prefer generics before they prescribe as many previously extortionate medications are cheaper and easily available. Many include cholesterol-lowering statins, type 2 diabetes drugs, and heartburn medications.
Most retail pharmacies list a generic list of drugs on their site so contact them so you save on prescriptions.
2. Buy a Larger Supply
An easy way to slash prescription costs is by stocking up. If you need to take a specific medication over several months, like high blood pressure medication, then ask your doctor to prescribe a 90-day supply.
As a result, you’ll save money buying medication in large quantities and you don’t have to refill the prescription as often. In fact, many pharmacies and big-box stores offer a 30-day supply of generic medications for as little as $4, and a 90-day supply for $10. Don’t feel discouraged if your prescription isn’t on the list, just check a different store.
Further, certain medication can be divided with a pill splitter so ask your doctor if this is possible with yours. For instance, you may have a 20-milligram pill that can be divided into two 10-milligram pills. But, it’s important to note, capsules can’t because they’re considered a slow-release medication.
3. Compare Prices
“How can I save money on prescriptions?” You ask.
Shop around because not all pharmacies charge the same for a particular medication. This is because some pharmacies buy directly from drug makers which can increase prices.
Once you fill a prescription, call different ones to compare prices. Don’t forget to call big-box retailers and grocery stores like Walmart alongside independent pharmacies. When you find a reliable pharmacist, ask them how to lower the cost of the medication as they’ll want to keep you satisfied.
4. Leverage Your Discounts
Not sure how to save on prescriptions?
When your health care provider hands you a prescription, ask whether they have discount coupons. Or check online for potential promotions.
Once you find coupon codes and discount cards, take them to the pharmacist. If it works, they’ll enter the code and you’ll save on prescriptions. Although many pharmacies accept discounts, call before you drive over to double-check.
If there’s no luck, ask the pharmacist to call your doctor to find a cheaper alternative as you can find a comparable medication that’s inexpensive and useful for your condition.
Further, consider a pharmacy savings card as they’re free and easy-to-use. First, find a reputable pharmacy and search for your medication along with your dose and quantity. Most often, you’ll find a coupon for the pharmacy with the lowest cost.
5. Apply For Financial Assistance
Many local governments, NGOs, and drug manufacturers provide prescription assistance for certain medications. To do this, you must apply and provide proof of financial need so while it’s a lengthy process, it lets you get the medication you need.
Further, many stores offer free prescription drug programs so you receive free antibiotics or high-blood pressure medication. If you’re interested, contact your local pharmacy.
Regardless of whether your insurance is covered by your employer or Medicare Part D, the plan determines which drugs are covered. So if you’re diagnosed with a new condition and the medication is expensive, consider your options because a higher monthly payment may mean better drug coverage.
6. Ask For Samples
Doctors often have samples they can pass along especially for maintenance medication like blood pressure medication. The medication could be from a brand that doesn’t have a generic available yet so ask your doctor if you can substitute to a generic.
You should also ask your doctor for sample prescriptions before you fill the prescription to see if you experience adverse effects.
7. Shop Online
An easy way to save money is to get prescriptions online as mail-order pharmacies don’t have overhead costs like your local one.
This lets you compare prices, find deals, and enjoy the added convenience of home delivery. But before buying the medication, make sure the pharmacy asks for a prescription and is part of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy program so you don't receive counterfeit pills.
You should also contact your health insurance provider to see if they work with a mail-order pharmacy as they may offer discounts.
That's How to Save Money on Prescriptions
Now you know seven ways to save money on prescriptions.
Ask your local pharmacy about generic medication as it’s far cheaper than branded ones, saving you a fortune in the long run. You should also buy larger quantities, shop around, and only use pharmacies that accept coupons or discount cards.
Consider applying for prescription assistance or finding a new insurance provider as they may offer better coverage and save you money on prescriptions. Good luck!
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