High prescription drug costs are becoming an increasingly large burden on seniors. More than 66 percent of all U.S. adults take prescription drugs, and according to SingleCare, a health services company, the average American spends approximately $1,200 annually on prescription drugs.
Do you find yourself spending an arm and a leg on prescriptions? Here are a few easy ways the government doesn’t tell you about saving at the pharmacy counter.
5 ways to lower your prescription drug costs
- Choose generics. This is one of the easiest ways to save money on prescription drug costs. Generic drugs are just as effective as their brand-name counterparts, but usually much less expensive. Ask your doctor if there is a generic version of your prescription drug available.
- Ask for the cash price. It’s sometimes cheaper to avoid filing your prescriptions with your insurance company and asking your pharmacist to pay the cash price for the drug. However, pharmacists are legally prohibited from telling you if this option is cheaper, so be sure to ask before filling any prescriptions.
- Shop around. One prescription that costs $14 at Sam’s Club could cost $242 elsewhere. With such drastic differences in pharmacy pricing, it’s important to shop around so you get the best deal. Comparing prices is especially important if you don’t have insurance or take a drug not covered by your plan.
- Stay in-network. Your favorite pharmacy might not always be the cheapest option for you. Some Medicare plans have preferred pharmacies where you will pay less for your prescription drugs. It’s wise to call your insurance plan and ask which pharmacies are in-network so you don’t pay more in prescription drug costs.
- Use pharmacy discount cards. If you don’t have insurance or opt to pay the cash price, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to pay the full price of the drug. Ask your pharmacist or doctor if they have pharmacy discount cards available, or look for ones online that cover the drug you need. Popular pharmacy discount cards include the Medicare Plus Card, GoodRX, US Pharmacy Card, ScriptSave WellRX.
Don’t take chances and try to take less than prescribed if you can’t afford your medications. Try our 5 tips before getting into a dangerous situation with your medicine. Always contact your doctor before stopping or changing a medication.