There are more than 20,000 prescription drugs approved for marketing in the US, and about half of Americans are taking prescription drugs. These drugs often help treat chronic diseases and relieve pain. Some are maintenance drugs that are important for people who have diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension.
As time goes by, the prices of commodities are rising. Medicine is no exception, as it’s a commodity that many people need. Those who are taking prescription meds are greatly affected by the rising prices. Without the medicine they need, they’re risking their health.
If you’re one of the many people taking such medication, you might be wondering if there’s a way to save up. Fortunately, there are lots of ways to save money on your medicine. Here are some tips to save more on your medicine.
1. Going Generic
Generic medications have the same active ingredients as their branded counterparts. The catch is that generics are much more affordable compared to branded medicine. Although doctors often prescribe you brand-name drugs, you can often request to go generic if you want to save up.
Always ask if your medication has a generic version. Although generics are cheaper than branded ones, these drugs still go through FDA approvals the same way branded drugs do. If you’re saving up with your medicating costs, the first place to start is by going generic.
2. Ask Around
Most of the time, the same doctors prescribing you the medications you need don’t actually know the actual price of those drugs. You can politely inform your doctor that you’re having trouble paying for your meds. Your doctor can quickly look for alternatives that can undoubtedly help with your savings.
You can also ask pharmacists and legit online sources for discounts and special programs. Your insurance can also have tie-ins with companies that provide you with a healthcare prescription discount. Don’t underestimate the savings you’ll get as these discount cards can reach up to 80%.
3. Assistance Programs
Speaking of asking around, you can also go directly to the drug companies that produce your medication. Most of the time, these companies have patient assistance programs designed to help you get discounted or even free medicine.
However, not everyone can opt for this option as you have to be qualified to get in. Always remember that each manufacturer or company may have different standards. You can personally reach out to these companies or ask your pharmacist how these patient assistance programs work.
4. Shopping Around
Another factor to consider when buying medication is the pharmacies where you get them. Prices can vary from pharmacy to pharmacy. Make sure you shop around and compare prices so that you’ll know where’s the best place to get your prescription meds.
Alternatively, you can also look online and get your prescription by mail. Of course, before proceeding with online sources, make sure they’re legit and have licenses to operate. You can also look for a VIPPS or a Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Site seal from them. Legit sites are also registered with government-certified bodies. Lastly, you can also look at other third-party sites’ ratings and reviews of these sources.
5. Discussions With Your Doctor
Sometimes, patients can do treatments without medications. Although this isn’t the preferred route, you can ask your doctor to get you off certain medications. For example, you can talk with your doctor about proper dieting and exercise if you don’t want to take drugs that help reduce cholesterol.
Your doctor may advise against this, but they can shorten the time or period you’ll be taking such medications. Instead of taking medications for three months, your doctor might reduce it to 1 or 2 months and order laboratory tests afterward to see if you’re really working out and improving.
In some cases, you may be able to get a double dose of your medication for you to split it. Depending on your medications, you can ask your doctor if it’s possible to go this route. You can actually save a lot if you buy your medicines this way. The FDA also has an article on the best ways to split tablets safely.
Pills that you can safely split often have a marker or a line between them to let you know where to split them in half. Make sure to consume both halves of the pill before splitting another one. Never split pills on your own. Some medications are less effective and can even be harmful when split. Always ask a medical professional for advice first.
7. Never Skip Doses
Many people think that skipping doses often helps them save up on medications. The truth is, skipping doses complicates your treatment. Instead of getting better, you may end up getting worse if you do it.
Antibiotics are the best examples of medications that you shouldn’t skip doses even if you feel better. Most of the time, people don’t complete their medication course because they feel well and think that skipping the last few tablets can save them money.
Not completing your antibiotics can lead to superinfections. Superinfections happen when a microorganism becomes resistant to previous antibiotics. The medicine won’t affect them and can cause more serious symptoms. In the end, you can develop health problems leading to bigger hospital bills and more expensive medication.
The prices of drugs are rising, and it’s not helping those on prescription. With the tips mentioned above, you can save up on medicine without compromising your health. Remember, always ask a medical professional or consult with your physician before taking medication.