Photography by Jerry Portelli
11 tips to save money when buying medicine
With today’s rising healthcare costs and the shaky economy, many individuals find it difficult to afford much-needed medication. The amount of money you have to spend on these medications can sometimes be overwhelming. Due to the pandemic, around 46% of people reported struggling to pay for their prescription medicine according to a BuzzRx survey.
However, with intelligent comparison and a little research, one can make significant savings. Here are 11 smart tips to save money when buying medicine to help you.
Go for Generics
The firmest way to save on medicinal costs is to opt for generics. These medications cost three times less compared to their brand-name counterparts, all the while containing the same active ingredients and just as strong as branded names are. On a sad note, not all medications have a generic equivalent, so it is imperative to ask your doctor when getting a prescription.
Shop Around to Compare Prices
Prices differ from one pharmacy to the next. Shop around in different pharmacies, compare costs, and then pick one that’s convenient for you. Visit and put big-box stores like Target and Wal-Mart on your list, as they offer medications with meager prices.
There are also multiple mobile applications available to assist you when comparing prices and discounts at local pharmacies and print free coupons.
Request for Alternative Drugs that may be Less Expensive
Doctors aren’t necessarily aware of the costs of the medications they prescribe. A lot of drugs can deal with the same illness in many cases. It would be better to ask your pharmacist if there is a less expensive option and then ask for your doctor’s approval before switching.
Do an Inventory
Please bring a list of your prescribed medications and their dosages for each appointment. Also inquire, “I’m not sure why I’m still taking this. Is this still required?” If these medicines are no longer needed, your doctor can recommend alternative prescriptions with lesser costs or even remove them from your regimen entirely.
Purchase in Bulk
If you want to save money on drugs, buying them in bulk might be the way to go. You should save some money by purchasing a 30 to 90 day supply. Going out and buying for refills seems to be such a hassle, so buying in bulk while still saving money is a win-win situation.
Apply for Discount Programs
Take advantage of any prescription rebate plans that you might be eligible for. Many organizations, including AARP, offer discount cards to their members that enable them to receive discounts on prescription drugs from participating pharmacies.
A quick Google search would reveal a multitude of available discount cards. Check them out and use them as needed.
Order Medications via Mail or Shop Online
Shopping online and sourcing out for the best prescription deals has become super handy these days. There are several websites where you can compare prescription drugs and order them from the convenience of your own home. The best thing is that, depending on how much you buy, you will save money.
Ensure that the website is a verified internet pharmacy before placing your order.
Split the Pills in Half
Consult your doctor to see if your medication is available in a higher dosage that can be split safely in half. You may be able to get a 2-month supply of drugs in a doubled dosage that you need for a price of a 1-month supply, immediately halving the cost of your prescription.
However, it is essential to remember that not all medications are compatible with table splitting, so please make sure to see your doctor first.
Check If You Are Eligible For Assistance
Drug firms administer Patient Assistance Programs (PAPS) to provide free or low-cost medicine to uninsured individuals (or in certain situations, if an insurance plan does not cover a particular medication).
RXAssist.org is an online resource center and database that can help you research PAPs, downloading software, and printing redeemables. If you have Medicare and meet certain income and resource requirements, you could very much be eligible for extra help to pay for your prescription drug coverage.
Make Use of a Flexible Spending Account (FSA)
If your employer offers a flexible spending plan (FSA), you can wire money into the account and pay for your prescriptions with pre-tax dollars. To exemplify, if you’re in the 25% tax band, this gives you a 25% discount on your medications. It can be a lot of help for individuals who know how much they spend every year on medicine and other health-related expenses.
This is crucial because if you don’t know how much you spend annually on healthcare costs, you’ll be disadvantaged.
Listen To Your Doctor
It can make a patient feel worse after spending a lot of money on seeing a doctor and making them buy so much medicine. Nevertheless, if you don’t obey your doctor’s orders, you might end up in the hospital again, racking up yet another bill.
Be mindful and listen to what your doctor says. Then remember all the saving tips when you are buying your prescription medicine.
Wrapping It Up
Even if the cost of prescription medicines can be way too much and over the budget, there are still plenty of ways to save. By being wise and knowledgeable of how to lessen medicinal costs, one can save so much money and not worry too much about prescription costs.