Hello again Health777,
I compiled a list of ways to save money on prescription drugs.
Since brand name drugs are usually much more expensive than their
generic equivalents, ask your physician and pharmacist for generic
drugs whenever appropriate.
By using generic drugs instead of brand name drugs, you can save from 20% to 80%.
Generic drugs are:
?Made with the same active ingredients as brand name drugs
Have the same effects in the body as brand name drugs
Clinically, the same, but may look different because inactive
ingredients, like color, may differ between manufacturers
Endorsed by the American Medical Association
Routinely used by most hospitals?
Generic Drugs Savings Calculator
Patient Assistance Programs
Free Medicine Program
?Our mission at the Free Medicine Program is helping patients in
obtaining prescription drugs and medications absolutely Free of
Application Form: http://www.freemedicineprogram.org/form.html
How to qualify for free prescription medicine
Brand name drugs
?This list has all the drugs and dosages that are available through
patient assistance programs, sorted alphabetically by brand name. As
of September 06, 2006, there are 2705 drugs and dosages on the list.
Drugs are added and deleted often, so check back regularly.?
Click on drug name for information:
Generic Name List
?This list has all the drugs and dosages that are available through
patient assistance programs, sorted alphabetically by generic name.?
Program Name List
Patient Assistance Program Applications
Run by the U.S. Administration on Aging.
Shows drug assistance programs by state. (800) 677-1116.
Partnership for Prescription Assistance. A resource for patient
assistance programs. The PPA also will help potential recipients sign
up for Medicare Part D coverage. (888) 4PPA-NOW (477-2669).
The Access to Benefits Coalition
Links to benefitscheckuprx, a service that allows you to search for
public and private programs
Discount Prescription Card
?Your employer's group insurance plan may provide you with one, or you
can choose to sign for a plan on your own. Some drugstore chains (such
as Eckerd) offer their own card, or you can go with a national plan.
Plans have the added benefit to let you shop at any pharmacy, but they
usually charge you a yearly fee (around $50 covers the whole
household). Discount cards may save you up to 30 percent of the quoted
price, depending on the drug. If you take a monthly prescription that
runs into the hundreds, you'll probably recoup the fee in a couple of
months. People with or without medical insurance can use these cards,
and many states offer special programs that award these cards to
Merck Perscription Discount Card
A discount card for 11 Merck products to anyone without prescription coverage.
Together RX Access Card
A discount card for over 275 medications manufactured by 12
participating companies. This program is for people with no
perscription insurance who meet the income guidelines.
Split Your Pills
?Because prescriptions usually cost the same not matter the dosage,
you could buy a bigger strength and split it into two doses. For
example, instead of buying ten 50mg-pills, you could buy ten
100mg-pills, split them in half, and get twenty doses for the same
?This is the quickest way possible to cut your drug costs in half.
Some tablets can literally be cut in half in order to achieve the
desired dosage. For example, your doctor may have prescribed a 40 mg
dosage. You may purchase the 80mg dosage and cut each pill in half,
which would give you the ability to take the 40 mg prescription
properly. The wonderful thing to this strategy is that there is very
little difference in price between the 40 mg dosage verses the 80 mg
dosage. And, in most instances the pharmacy will cut the drug in half
for you (some may want to charge to cut your pills in half). Be sure
to discuss this strategy with your doctor, as it will not work with
all medications. You should also discuss this strategy with your
Potential Cost Savings
Free Medicine Foundation
The Institute in Washington, D.C., is a public interest group that has
free booklets online about free and low-cost prescription drugs
?The revised eighth edition, "Free and Low Cost Prescription Drugs" 33
pages, now includes one hundred and three programs and 1,104 drug
listings. The booklet gives proven tips, tools and tactics on how and
where to get free and low cost prescription drugs.?
Download your FREE copy here. http://www.institutedc.org/download.htm
Or use this direct link: http://www.institutedc.org/pd85.pdf
Prescriptions4FREE Resource Center
Medicare Prescription Drugs
?Medicare Part D, the new outpatient drug coverage beginning on Jan.
1, 2006, works like other health insurance plans. Medicare
beneficiaries will be able to choose from at least two prescription
drug coverage plans. Those plans will cover drugs for all medically
necessary treatments, will pay for brand-name and generic drugs, and
will enable beneficiaries to get prescriptions at a pharmacy or
through mail order.
The standard drug coverage in 2006 will require consumers to pay a
$250 deductible and a monthly premium of about $35. After
beneficiaries pay $250, Medicare will pay 75 percent of a
beneficiary's drug expenses up to $2,250, with beneficiaries paying 25
percent of the costs.?
If you are a veteran, check with the Veterans Administration to see if
you qualify for benefits.
More information is available at http://www.va.gov/health_benefits
AARP members are eligible for many discounts, including mail-order
Pharmacies across the border
If you live close to either Canada or Mexico, you can buy medications
in either for a lower. price.
?Canada places a limit on the price that can be charged by the drug
companies on prescription drugs. With those limits the price may be
half or less than what you are paying in the U.S. That, along with the
lower value of the Canadian dollar compared to US currency makes
buying in Canada a good value. You will need a prescription from a
doctor in in Canada, but pharmacies that routinely deal with people
from the US can often arrange this. Many seniors groups in border
areas are arranging bus trips north to buy medications.?
?Mexico is another medication bargain. In fact many border towns boast
almost as many pharmacies as residents. Prescriptions are not required
for most medications, but should be obtained to prevent problems when
returning home. Do exercise caution when buying medications in Mexico
as the quality may be lower than in the US. Be sure to check
expiration dates and dosages. ?
Here you will find reviews of most of the different Canadian
pharmacies offering services to Americans through websites.
?We have rated the different companies based on a number of things
including, website content, quality of service, and drug price. In
addition, you will find numerous other helpful links on this site.?
Buying Prescription Drugs in Mexico
FDA Traveler Alert
?Mail-order and Internet pharmacies are inexpensive, convenient, and
can help you save money on drugs. But take the normal precautions:
Make sure the pharmacy is licensed; don't order medications without a
prescription; and stay away from foreign companies. Medicines
manufactured in other countries are not FDA approved, and they may not
live up to American standards. Besides, bringing foreign pills in to
the country or having them delivered to your house is technically
Instead of heading directly to your local pharmacy, use the Web and
your phone to find the lowest price for your particular prescription.
?..drug prices vary considerably. One survey found that prudent
shopping among local pharmacies saved consumers almost 10% on
brand-name drugs and a whopping 81% on generics, on average."
?Call locally-owned pharmacies, chain pharmacies and drug stores and
warehouse stores for their prices .?
Rxaminer.com. Register for free and find out about generic and OTC
alternatives and comparison shop among retailers for the lowest price.
DestinationRx.com. This site offers information and education on drugs
and alternatives and a price-comparison tool.
www.PharmacyChecker.com: compare prescription drug prices for more
than 1,000 medications.
Lower Cost Drugs
Saving Money if your Drug Doesn't have a Generic. In some cases, your
doctor may be able to prescribe a lower cost drug for your condition.
To find out if there are other lower cost drugs, including generics,
that can be used to treat your condition:
Check Preferred Drug List : http://notesnet.carefirst.com/formulary/formulary.nsf
Print the list
Take the list to your doctor
Ask your doctor if a preferred drug could work for you
Source: Carefirst http://www.carefirst.com/pharmacy/GenericDrugs/GenericDrugsLanding.html
Ask Your Doctor for Free Samples
?Many pharmaceutical companies are anxious to have you try their
medications. So anxious that that they supply physicians with large
quantities of samples to dispense to their patients (you). How can you
get the free samples? Just ask. Some physicians will give you enough
medication to treat you for the entire duration of your illness (short
term illnesses). Samples are a good idea if there is the possibility
that your body will not tolerate the medication. Samples will provide
the opportunity to test the medication before you invest in a large
quantity at the pharmacy. Don?t be shy. Samples are there for you to
try. Many Doctor?s have large areas of their offices (cabinets and
rooms) dedicated to the proper storage and dispensing of samples.?
Expiration date myth
?Recently, several consumer groups reported that the rigid expiration
dates that appear on prescription packages are a myth; that in fact,
the medication is viable long after the stated expiration date.
Millions of dollars worth of perfectly good medication is being thrown
away needlessly each year. More information on the ?expiration myth?
is beginning to hit the market. Check with your pharmacist and your
physician before using expired medications.?
Buy in bulk
?If a certain drug is part of your daily routine, you might be able to
save money by purchasing more than a month's worth of medications and
supplies (if your health plan allows it). Keep in mind that some drugs
don't keep well. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before stocking up,
and take the expiration dates on your medicine seriously.?
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I hope the information provided is helpful!