It is no secret that medicines can come with a hefty price tag. It is so expensive that, according to a survey conducted by the KFF Health Tracking Poll, nearly 1 out of every 4 Americans can’t afford their prescription medicine. This can lead to people questioning whether to buy their medicines or skip it and risk becoming sicker day by day.
Your health should not be compromised just because you couldn’t afford expensive medicines. The following are six (6) practical ways to save cash when purchasing your prescription medicines.
Switch to Generic Medicine
Not all medicine has a generic drug counterpart, but if the medicine you needed has one, then purchase the generic one.
A generic medicine is a copy of the brand name drug, so they have the same active ingredient and therapeutic effects. They are significantly 30% to 80% cheaper than brand name medicine because generic medication makers do not spend enormous money on research and development.
You also don’t have to worry about generic medicine’s safety and effectiveness because they have to meet strict specifications and requirements from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before they are approved to be released in the market.
The next time you get sick, don’t tell your doctor and health care provider that you preferred the generics over the expensive brand name medicine. You can save a lot of money by switching to the generic drug counterpart.
There are times where you can take a single medicine pill twice. There are various pills and tablets in the market that are safe to be broken into half and can be taken twice.
Depending on what medication you are on, by splitting the medicine, you can save some money by ordering fewer drugs but in a higher dose. Some pills and tablets have a line in the middle to ensure accuracy when cutting the medicine. There are also various tools, such as pill cutters, available online or in the drugstore to help you split the medicine.
However, remember to consult first your doctor or a pharmacist before doing this. There can be harmful repercussions, including stomach irritation, by taking a broken medicine if they are not meant to be split in the first place.
Small pills, tablets with unnatural shapes, and capsules can be complicated to cut accurately or simply can’t be cut at all, so they are not suitable for this method.
Be a Smart Shopper
The price of the medicine you need can vary depending on which store you will buy them. Before buying your prescription medicine, it is advised to call their numbers or visit the online profile of the various pharmacies around you and then compare their prices of your needed medications.
Multiple factors can affect the price of the medicine, including location, the volume of the medicine, and whether they purchase directly from the drug makers or use a middle man. With research, you can know what the cheapest option you’ve got and save some money.
Coupons are Your Friend
One of the easiest ways to save some money when buying prescription medicine is to use discount coupons, such as coupons from BuzzRx.com. There are reliable sources online that provide various discount cards and coupon codes for a specific medication. A lot of them only work when you’re only paying cash. However, you can always call or visit the pharmacy to ask what their policy is about it.
In general, you can show the pharmacist your coupon code or card, and they will be the ones to enter the code so you can avail of the discount. Still, there are instances where they don’t accept discount cards, but you can always ask the pharmacy if they have their own in-house discount that you can avail of. Remember, discount coupons will always be your friend.
Ask for Samples
When you were out consulting with your doctor and prescribed you medicine, ask if they have a sample of that drug available. Doctors often have free samples of certain medicines, especially with maintenance medicines, including blood pressure medications and asthma inhalers.
It is best to try the medicine first to ensure that you don’t have any adverse side effects from the drug. Before you leave your doctor’s office, ask them if the sample medicine has a generic counterpart, so after you ran out of the sample, you know what to buy.
Online Pharmacies and Mail Orders
Some medicines are cheaper when you purchase them online, which is why there are mail-order pharmacies. Their medicines are less expensive compared to your local pharmacies because they have less overhead expenses.
However, always remember to purchase only on reliable and trustworthy online pharmacies. Check whether your health insurance provider has a mail-order pharmacy partner where you know you can safely order your medicine.
Getting sick is a blow in your pocket, especially if you have no budget for it. However, the good news is that there are ways you can purchase the medicine you need even if it’s out of your budget. Knowing what options you have will not only help you save money, but also your life.
With the six (6) helpful tips mentioned above, you can buy your medicine at ease and without compromising your health just because you can’t afford them. You can definitely purchase the medicine you need and deserve when you really need them.