Health expenses is an expense that is most often cut when you have to be on a budget because money is tight. Often you’re just trying to be able to afford rent, utilities or even food, but prescription drugs are an important part of maintaining a healthy living experience. Skimping on these medications can lead to serious health problems that can even be costly in the future. Don’t give up prescription drugs right away, but instead try to look for a more inexpensive option.
Various ways that you can get prescription drugs at a discount are out there. Here are few:
- Buy at a mail-order pharmacy. Many health insurance plans will offer a mail-order option, so you should check to see if yours does. A large amount can often be saved per prescription each month according to Susan Pisano, who is the vice president of communications at America’s Health Insurance Plans. Heading to your local retail pharmacy can be time consuming, but mail order pharmacies are usually considered a much easier option. There is even the option to have them filled and delivered to you every month if you look into it, but you can also just have each month delivered at a time. However, if you don’t want to deal with the hassle every month, you can receive a three month supply at once.
- Look into generic brands. Generic brands hold the same chemical equivalent with half of the price of brand name prescription drugs. These can be about 30-80% cheaper overall. Pisano says that you can even request that the prescription be written for a generic one because of cost. Therapeutic equivalents are a less expensive drug that is chemically similar, and these are also great options to treat the same illness in half the cost.
- Keep looking around. Local retailers like Walmart offer large discounts with a few prescription drugs, so you should look for the advertisements that promote these low prices. Go up to the pharmacy counters and ask around to see if your drugs may cost less at one you haven’t been to yet. The price differences vary a great deal from pharmacy to pharmacy.
- Check out drug assistance programs. Pharmaceutical companies will offer programs that can give various people discount options so they can continue to stay healthy by taking all of their medications. This is a less expensive or even free option that is offered to those who qualify, but even if you don’t qualify for free prescriptions there are cards they can give you to get your own prescriptions at lower prices. However, insurance is usually necessary to have if you wish to qualify.
- Medicare. For those who are 65 years old or older, or even if you’re just disabled, there is a Medicare program that is government-funded and you may qualify for. Medicare will offer you your prescription drugs at a lower price due to their drug programs.
- Medicaid. This is state government-funded and provides cost assistance programs to usually low income individuals and their families. It will cover health services which will usually include medication.
- Stick to the drugs in your formulary. Every health insurance plan has its own formulary. This is a list that shows the covered drugs that your insurance will handle and what you’ll have to pay for them. You should turn this list into your doctor. Then make sure to ask them to prescribe the least expensive ones whenever they can.
Don’t give up your prescription drugs because you don’t have the money to pay for them. This will only cause you later problems. With just a little more effort, affordable prescription drug options are out there, and you can find them. You don’t need to get sicker because it’ll cost you even more later on.