American adults pay an average of 48% of prescription drug costs out of pocket. And sadly, the percentage only goes up for older Americans with those aged 80 or older paying 67%.
If you feel like you’re paying too much for your prescription drugs every month, you’re obviously not alone. But, lowering the price of the prescription overall will help lower your out-of-pocket costs.
Keep reading to discover a few ways that you can save money on prescriptions.
One of the easiest ways to save on prescriptions is to opt for generic medication whenever possible. A generic drug is a drug composed of the same ingredients and dosage as the brand-name drug.
New drugs have to go through extensive safety trials and have a patent for a specific period of time to help recoup the costs of creation. But, when that patent wears out, generic drugs are allowed to appear with the same active ingredients without having to go through the same testing. This allows for significant cost-savings between the two versions of the same drug.
Wondering if one of your expensive brand-name drugs has a generic version? Check out the FDA’s generic drug approval list.
Look for Coupons, Deals
Wondering how to save on prescriptions without changing the brand of medication you’re on? If so, there may be coupons or deals waiting for you.
First, start by checking the brand-name drug’s website. Many medication websites will offer coupons for a certain percentage off of the retail price. If you don’t see a coupon there, do a Google search for coupons specific to your medication.
Many pharmacies even offer discounts to loyal customers. The next time you go for a refill, ask your pharmacist about any prescription cards or loyalty deals they may offer.
Compare Pharmacy Prices
When it comes to saving on prescriptions, it can require a decent amount of legwork. But, taking the time to search for the best price now can help save you money month after month.
One of the more time-consuming steps is to compare costs at your local pharmacies. While you might assume that each pharmacy will charge you the same amount of money, that’s simply not true.
Start by calling all the local pharmacies that accept your medical insurance. Inquire about the cost of all your medications and add up the total monthly price. Then, compare these costs among one another.
You can also check prices at pharmacies outside of your insurance network. It might surprise you, but oftentimes, people spend less on medication when they don’t go through their insurance.
Once you’ve checked all your local pharmacies, evaluate the lowest cost estimate. If the amount is still more than you’d like to be paying, try this next tip.
Try an Online Pharmacy
If you’re wondering how to save money on prescription drug prices, the solution may be to ditch the physical pharmacy. In today’s digital age, everything is now available in an online format — including pharmacies.
Online pharmacies work exactly the same as physical pharmacies expect they require less effort. All you do is submit your prescription, complete the purchase, and your medication get shipped directly to you. You can get almost any medication at a steep discount, regardless of whether you buy Neurontin or the generic Gabapentin.
Because these pharmacies don’t exist in a physical location, they can provide medications at a much lower price. In addition, it’s a lot easier to compare prices provided by online pharmacies than to call every local pharmacy and inquire about prices.
Buy Multiple Months at Once
Are you stuck refilling your prescription every 30 days and still paying too much money for it? Just like with most things in life, prescriptions often come with a discount for bulk orders.
The next time you go to your doctor’s office, ask about 90-day or yearly refills. For most medications, they can prescribe you larger quantities than the traditional 30-day refill. As long as the medication is not considered a controlled substance, this should be a simple transition.
Not only will you see a discount on your refill cost, but you’ll save on time and transportation costs associated with your monthly refill.
Ask for Free Samples
If you’re truly struggling when it comes to affording medication, you may consider saving money through free samples.
Many times, pharmaceutical companies will provide doctors and medical clinics with free samples in hopes that the doctor will prescribe their product. This means that your doctor likely has free samples just waiting to give away.
Explain to your doctor that you’re struggling with prescription prices and ask them if they have any samples. Likely, they’ll provide a small supply to you at no cost. This will help lower your total annual prescription prices — even if you only save on one month’s cost.
Free samples are especially great when you’re trying a new medication. That way, you don’t have to pay for a full prescription only to find out that the medication doesn’t work for you.
Save Money on Prescriptions With Your Next Refill
By using these tips, you’re ready to save money on prescriptions with your next refill.
Start by opting for a generic medication, looking for coupons or deals, and compare prices at physical pharmacies near you. If the cost is still excessive, shop at an online pharmacy and attempt to purchase multiple months at once for a discounted price. Finally, you can also ask your doctor for free samples to help offset the cost for a month or two.
Looking for more ways to cut down on your medical costs? Be sure to browse the Clinic section of this site for more great advice.