Written and medically reviewed by Dorcas Morak, Pharm.D
The high cost of prescriptions is a major challenge for many Americans. Approximately 32% of Americans who take four or more prescription medications say the cost negatively affects their quality of life. Those people, as well as those with chronic conditions and households with yearly incomes under $40,000 are more likely to struggle to afford their medications. To help, rxless has put together this helpful guide with ways to save money and afford your medications more easily.
Ways to save on medications:
Consider generic. Generic versions of brand-name drugs are less expensive. When compared to brand-name medications, switching to generic can save you 20% to 70% on your prescription cost. Asking your doctor to switch you to the generic version of your medications, if possible, can save you a lot of money. However, if your medication does not have a generic form or the generic version is not suitable for you, a rxless discount coupon may be your best option.
Use savings programs provided by large chain pharmacies. If you fill your prescription at a large chain pharmacy like Walgreens, Walmart, or CVS, you may want to sign up for one of their prescription savings programs. For example, with Walgreens' Prescription Savings Club Program, you can fill prescriptions for hundreds of generic medications for $7.50, $10, or $15 for a 30-day supply, or $15, $20, or $30 for a 90-day supply. Subscription fees are $20 annually for individuals and $35 annually for families. Another option is the Walmart $4 prescription program. Note that this program covers a few select generic drugs. If you take brand medications or the generic ones you are taking aren't covered, consider an rxless coupon to save.
Consider cheaper alternatives. There might be other, less expensive medications that are similarly effective for treating your condition. Ask your doctor whether there are more affordable alternatives and whether switching to a different medication would have an impact on your treatment.
Get a 90-day supply when possible. Sometimes, a 90-day supply can cost less than a full year of 30-day supplies. You can’t change a 30-day supply prescription to a 90-day one at the pharmacy, so ask your doctor for another prescription if you want to transition to 90-day fills. For prescriptions that require more than a 30-day supply, certain insurance plans might mandate that you utilize a mail-order pharmacy.
Use a Patient Assistance Program. Governmental agencies, nonprofits, and pharmaceutical companies offer many programs to help with medication costs. If you are eligible for these programs, they can help you afford your prescriptions. Each program has a different enrollment process, but you can sign up online, over the phone, or with assistance from your doctor's office. You cannot combine patient-assisted programs with an rxless discount coupon. But most of the time, an rxless coupon will offer the best price. For the greatest savings, make sure you compare the cost of the various options.
** Ask your local drugstore for a lower price.** Unlike big chain pharmacies where the price is fixed, local independent pharmacies can sometimes offer discounts if asked. While not guaranteed, it never hurts to ask if there’s anything they can do to lower the price.