Prescriptions are expensive, especially in the US, where residents pay more for medications than anywhere else in the industrialized world. It’s no surprise, then, to learn that 24 percent of Americans taking prescription drugs say that it’s difficult for them to afford their medications.
Luckily, there are ways to save money on prescriptions. These strategies can help lighten the load for those of you with chronic conditions or struggling to pay for pricey prescription drugs. And, even if you’re not currently taking any medications, it’s always a bonus to find cheap prescriptions in case you do fall ill.
Want to know how to save on prescriptions? Keep reading to learn more!
1. Shop Around
You compare prices and shop around for everything from flights to cereal, so why not do the same with your prescriptions? Many people assume that there is a set cost for each medication but the truth is that different pharmacies charge very different prices.
Before you fill a prescription, do your research. Call local independent pharmacies, big-box retailers, and grocery stores. You should also check out accredited online pharmacies, where you can order now and get cheap medications sent right to your door.
2. Use a Discount Savings Program
While you’re searching online for cheap medications and comparing prices, make sure to look for discount coupons and savings programs too.
For instant savings on prescriptions, all you need to do is search the name of your medication and adjust the filters. These relate to specifics such as your dose, quantity, and location. Then, select the coupon for the pharmacy with the lowest price. There are also specific websites and apps dedicated to cheap prescriptions and saving on medications so be sure to look into these options.
3. Ask for the Generic
Many brand-name medications also have generic versions available at lower prices. These generics have the exact same active ingredients and available doses as brand-name drugs. And, despite what many people think, they must adhere to the same strict FDA rules as branded medications and are just as effective.
The reason that generics are cheaper is because the patent has run out on that particular drug. This means that opting for the generic instead of the named brand can net you cheap prescriptions every time without sacrificing your health in any way.
Ask the pharmacist about generic alternatives to brand-name medications to see if you can switch your prescription. Or, next time you visit your doctor, ask them to write you a prescription for the generic version.
4. Bulk Buy
If you have a chronic condition or an ongoing health issue that will mean you’ll be taking the same medication for at least three months, ask your doctor to write you a prescription for a 90-day supply.
As with bulk-buying grocery items, you can often save money by purchasing medication in larger quantities. For example, you might find a 30-day supply of a generic drug for $12 and a 90-day supply for $25. Plus, you won’t have to refill your prescription as often, which can save on copays, as well as transport costs and parking.
5. Don’t Assume Your Health Insurance Is Cheaper
While we’re on the subject of copays, it’s worth looking into your health insurance policy’s prescription drug coverage. Although people often assume using insurance is cheaper, this isn’t always the case.
For example, if your insurance copay is $20 but the medication only costs $10 direct from the pharmacy, saving on prescriptions could be as easy as paying for your medication out-of-pocket rather than getting it through your insurance. Next time, before using your insurance, ask what the cost of a drug is without insurance.
6. Apply for Financial Assistance
Depending on where you live and the type of medications you need, you may qualify for prescription drug financial support offered by your state or local government.
Although program requirements vary and some impose income restrictions, you can learn whether you’re eligible by checking out the state pharmaceutical assistance program. Certain pharmacies also take part in these programs so it’s also worth contacting your local pharmacies for more information. For example, if you need antibiotics or have a condition such as diabetes or high blood pressure, you may be able to save a significant amount on prescription medications through these programs.
7. Check Whether You Still Need That Medication
One of the simplest but often overlooked options for saving on medications is to check in with your doctor about repeat prescriptions you’ve had for a long time as you may be paying for medications you no longer need.
Many people take the same medication for years, but if they’ve made lifestyle changes to improve their health since their original assessment, the medication might not be necessary anymore. Even if you haven’t changed your lifestyle, your doctor may be able to prescribe you cheap medications in place of the more expensive ones you’ve always taken.
Either way, it won’t hurt to ask your doctor about the medications you’re taking and whether you could cut back or change your regime around to help with saving on prescriptions.
Easy Ways to Save Money on Prescriptions
While prescription costs can bust your budget, these easy ways to save money on prescriptions can help you feel better for less.
Whether that means swapping to generics for cheap prescriptions, shopping around for the best deals, or making the most of coupons and discount programs, these money-saving strategies can make all the difference to your health and your finances.
Looking for more lifestyle tips and updates? Be sure to check out our other blog posts for all the latest news and advice on everything from business to health.