Do you have a prescription drug that you take regularly? Even with insurance these regular expenses can add up. Most of us take a prescription at least occasionally. Here are some tips on how to save on this expense.
Ways to Save on Prescription Drugs
- Pill Splitting
If you take a 20mg pill every day could you split a 40mg pill? This is a question to ask your doctor as not all pills can be split (or even come in the size you’re looking for). If they do though the cost savings is obvious. You basically can cut your costs in half by taking the time to cut your pills. Some pills can be easily split with the knife but there are even “pill splitters” made to specifically help with this task.
- Mail Order
Many prescriptions are considerably less expensive if you by them by mail. I’m not talking about some internet ad that pops up on your screen. Most health plans offer a mail order service. You can order 3 months of your prescription through them at a lower rate than you’d pay buying 1 month at a time. This only makes sense of course if you know you’re going to be using the prescription for at least 3 months. Not only does this save you money but also 3 trips to go pick-up your prescription. You can use this service even if you have a prescription that requires special care (like refrigeration) – they will send the medicine in cold packs.
Some doctors automatically prescribe name brands so make sure to ask them if there is a generic equivalent. Once generics can be produced the cost comes way down. There might not have been any on the market when you started taking your medication so make sure check to if things have changed.
Sometimes there are multiple drug options for your condition but your insurance covers some much better than others. Call your insurance company to ask about “preferred” drugs and then talk to your doctor about any alternatives you may have.
- Doctor’s Samples
If your doctor is prescribing a new drug make sure to ask if they have any samples. Manufacturers often give out samples to doctors to encourage them to choose their product. Sometimes the “sample” is big enough to keep you from having to fill the prescription at all.
Another thing that gets given to doctors is coupons from certain drugs. Make sure to ask about those. Even if your doctor doesn’t have any there may be some available from the drug maker. Be sure to check out their website for any coupons or other promotions.
- Discount Plans
If you do not have insurance that covers prescriptions you may be able to save money with a pharmacy discount card. Look around at the pharmacies in your area and compare what their plans offer in the way of discounts for the prescriptions that you have. Depending on the prescriptions and the pharmacy’s plan this can add up to big savings.
How do you save on prescription drugs?