Skyrocketing Prescription drug costs?

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posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 03:53 PM
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Hello ATS..

I know many Americans are skimping on their health care needs with our miserable struggling economy that's forcing people to continue to cut back on prescription drugs including me Ive talked to some family members and most are taking at least two prescription medications..

I know Ive failed to fill prescriptions because of cost some of my medications have a 2 thousand dollar a month co-pay..Are you struggling to pay for your prescription medication? I know many are and its a real headache.. Big pharma conspires to make profits and don't seem to care about us..

The other day i was in a pharmacy to pick up my meds, and there was a lady in front of me with her prescription to be filled she didn't have enough money to pay for her meds all she had was 8 dollars the bill came to 30 dollars so the pharmacy gave her 8 dollars worth of her meds, I asked her how in the world she was going to make it through the month on that amount of meds she replied i will take 2 a week and hope i live this just made me sick and i know allot of people are doing this..

I know with the cost of my meds i had to start looking for a way to cover the costs,My medications were running 6 thousand dollars a month and soon i was going to be either dead or in a park living in a cardboard box so i took steps to this miserable problem..

For starters, when a doctor is about to write a prescription, jump in with key questions,are free samples available? Please don't be afraid to ask..Is the drug generally covered by insurance plans? Sometimes very costly medicines or some brands in categories with multiple drugs are excluded.

Is there a cheaper drug that will work as well? Is there a generic version? Many of these drugs have generic versions 90 percent below the brand-name medicine's cost..There is assistance programs out there also some are fairly generous..Msg me and i can give you the names and sites..

Drug makers almost always offer patients help go to the website for the company or the drug Ive done this many times,Many can supply drugs for free or nearly free. Also patient advocacy groups focused on one disease often can help patients or point them in the right direction..There is also many government subsidized health clinics provide prescriptions for free or at a discount based on the patient's income.

Large discount stores offer hundreds of widely used generic drugs for just $4 to $10 a month,If you're insured, don't assume your prescription plan offers the best price...Prescription coupons from the makers offer a first prescription free, or $50 to $100 off sometimes up to a few years..But i need to add coupons cannot be used with Medicare, Medicaid or other government insurance.

There is also discount cards available on line for free..Each card could offer a huge discount on one drug or just a small discount on another.Ive learned different cards, different drugs all yield different prices you have to shop around..

If you're shopping on line, avoid sites that don't require a prescription. That's illegal and you could get some potentially dangerous counterfeit drugs.If your going to shop on line there is lists on the net with approved Internet pharmacies look them up please..

With these tips Ive been able to get my medications down to 100.00 dollars a month,from 6 thousand dollars a month its not a easy road and you have to do allot of research but its well worth it and sometimes you have to do this a few times a year to keep the meds going..If anything if i helped one person on here with there meds it puts a smile on my face..peace,sugarcookie1




posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 03:59 PM
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reply to post by sugarcookie1
 


Excellent topic and one that I have a few answers to help with!

First off there are patient assistance programs that can help find low cost, mail order options for many prescriptions!

Secondly, many pharmacies these days have $4.00 plans ( they vary from chain to chain - including which drugs are covered. So if Wal Mart doesn't have your prescription on their plan, Target, or another chain - even grocery chains - might )

And if you live near a Publix ( grocery store chain ) they have a free antibiotic program. Zero cost for many antibiotics.

Also many of the drug companies will sell to you at a very reduced price, or even provide your meds free, but you have to contact them directly and talk to their customer service people.

Even if none of the above helps - you can always speak to your healthcare provider and see if there is not a medication they can alter your prescription to, that is covered in one of the above. Often there are very good analogs that are much cheaper. Doctors tend to prescribe by habit - the same pill over and over again - often because they get perks for doing so. It is not hard to get them to offer options.

~Heff



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 04:16 PM
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Originally posted by Hefficide
reply to post by sugarcookie1
 


Excellent topic and one that I have a few answers to help with!

First off there are patient assistance programs that can help find low cost, mail order options for many prescriptions!

Secondly, many pharmacies these days have $4.00 plans ( they vary from chain to chain - including which drugs are covered. So if Wal Mart doesn't have your prescription on their plan, Target, or another chain - even grocery chains - might )

And if you live near a Publix ( grocery store chain ) they have a free antibiotic program. Zero cost for many antibiotics.

Also many of the drug companies will sell to you at a very reduced price, or even provide your meds free, but you have to contact them directly and talk to their customer service people.

Even if none of the above helps - you can always speak to your healthcare provider and see if there is not a medication they can alter your prescription to, that is covered in one of the above. Often there are very good analogs that are much cheaper. Doctors tend to prescribe by habit - the same pill over and over again - often because they get perks for doing so. It is not hard to get them to offer options.

~Heff


Thanks for posting Heff..I wanted to add Wal Mart and Target but i didn't know if i could without breaking ATS rules..

Ive spent hours on the phone contacting them directly and talking to their customer service people and they have always helped..

And your right Doctors tend to prescribe by habit and if you don't ask for a generic they will just write what they please so ask!

Ive been doing this routine for years and sometimes it just gets exhausting..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 04:28 PM
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This is some good info, sugarcookie. Many people just don't get the scripts they need because they cannot afford them, but, as you were so kind to point out, there are ways to get the cost down.

S & F.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 04:37 PM
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reply to post by FissionSurplus
 


FissionSurplus
Thank you for posting..Your right many don't get there meds because they just cant afford them i went through it myself to the point i was making myself sick with worry..

Then i started to research this stuff i was in a panic and had to do something .. And i found out there is help out there but its a shame we as Americans have to go though this but as you can see there is ways around this mess..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 04:40 PM
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There is this site that covers ways to get your medication cheaper, and kind of explain how the medical insurance coverage actually increase the costs.




Medications: What Your Pharmacist Won’t Tell You
-Most generic prescription medications aren’t 50% or 75% less expensive that their brand named equivalents, they are 100 times cheaper!!
-Most people can pay less for generic medications if they pay for them directly than if they use their insurance and pay a copay (people pay extra for the privilege of being overcharged).
-The Costco list at the end of the section is only partial but it's clear that $32.95 per year is a lot less than $10 per month!


True cost of healthcare




The list is for some of the most commonly prescribed medicines by primary care doctors. For example: A person can have high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, congestive heart failure, and coronary artery disease and be treated effectively with lisinopril, carvedilol, simvastatin, furosemide, metformin and glipizide all for a total of only $172 per YEAR! (See table below). Throw in aspirin for about $5 per year and its still a total of less than 50 cents per day for everything. If its a male who also has an enlarged prostate, his terazosin would cost only $27 per year and if taking all of those medications every day depresses him, he can get Prozac (Fluoxetine) for $21 per year. But, if the same patient uses his insurance and has even a $5 monthly copay for each medication the same list would cost about twice as much. (If that doesn't strike you as ironic, nothing will.) I should emphasize here that these are highly effective medications used to treat many of the most common causes of death and disability in this country.


Hope you'll find it useful.
edit on 25-9-2012 by WhiteHat because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:26 PM
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WhiteHat
Thank you for the link..Yes Ive found that many of my meds are cheaper not using the insurance and copay ..People do pay extra for the privilege of being overcharged..Only in America huh..

I'm sure many will find this helpful..There is allot of people out there Ive found out that have no idea about whats out there i feel for the elderly..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 06:40 PM
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As a former practicing pharmacist, I would like to add that in most cases, especially with pharmacies inside a Walmart, Target, or Grocery store, the pharmacy is there as a "draw."

A typical grocery store makes a tremendous profit margin on food, and often times will run the pharmacy just above the black to get you in the door to buy tomatoes as you walk toward the pharmacy.

Also, I would like to stress your comment about online pharmacies. You are correct, there are a TON of illegal counterfeit drugs being dumped into the US market. If the drugs do not require a prescription, DO NOT BUY from that site!!

Many doctors do have an ample supply of samples. Like you said, do not be afraid to ask. Even if you get a month worth, you can often go back and request more. I have several prescriptions that I get from my MD because of the high cost at retail..and they are happy to provide it as they see results in a compliant patient, as aposed to one who skips the meds because of expense.

There are a few reputable Canadian pharmacies online that I have found to be 1/4th the cost of what I can buy in the US. Do a google search and find them.

And lets not forget the homeopathic approach. There are MANY prescription drugs that can be replaced with homeopathic methods. Doctors are programmed to treat symptoms, not necessarily fix the underlying problem.

And while I hate to say it, stay away from small mom and pop pharmacies if you can. They tend to be the ones who will buy illegal counterfeit drugs, knowingly or unknowingly to boost their bottom line. Chains are less apt to this type of practice, and while it may sound shocking, this does happen in small privately owned pharmacies. Be careful!

Hope this helps...i am available for questions.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 08:01 PM
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reply to post by phantomjack
 


phantomjack
Thank you so much for your knowledge..
I know places like Wal Mart and Target are hoping people will be drawn in for there cheap meds in hopes you will spend more money on there made in china wares i know Ive done it but try hard to go there with one purpose in mind my meds..

Many doctors do have an ample supply of med samples to give out but were i live distributing free drug samples to patients s long gone they aren't doing it anymore..

I asked the reasons behind this i was told it keeps the Dr"s from worrying about expiration dates, recalls and overall tracking of the drugs in their sample closets.

This is were the influence of drug companies also comes into play representatives with samples help educate doctors about the newest medicines, others contend that doctors are more likely to prescribe a drug that they already have as a sample..To me the business of health care is really sick-care.We all know its BS..


For a great majority, generics DO work fine, that's what has the pharmaceutical companies spending millions of dollars trying to hang onto drug patents. If generics didn't work that well, they wouldn't be trying to protect their patents. If you look at the chemical breakdowns of the drugs, you find out that the active ingredients of brand drugs verses generics are exactly the same with the same dosage amounts...

Doctors are employees of the major pharmaceutical companies. It is hard for a Dr. to turn down a chance to earn $1,000 or more by speaking to various Dr. Groups in the area. The Dr. Is a salesman who explains why their drug is more effective than their competitors.

I wont get into the homeopathic approach but your right there is drugs that can be replaced with homeopathic methods..peace,sugarcookie1
Stay healthy, my friends



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:25 PM
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I was hoping more would be interested in this thread even if it to just pass on to a friend or family member something like this could save there lives or make it better with a bit of knowledge but it seems there is no interest or very little..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:33 PM
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Here, I have good insurance with a ten dollar copay and I am researching the basis of the pharmacutical drugs.
I'm not counting on having that coverage in the future, If I find out what I have, I can find either a treatment or cure for the problem many times. I'm studying the thyroid and adrenal system now and investigating options. This covers many depression disorders and energy processes.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:36 PM
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reply to post by sugarcookie1
 


It is a horrifying reality when pharmaceutical companies are literally swimming in money and making it difficult for people to afford their medications. It wouldn't hurt them to at the very least make prescriptions affordable because they would still be making a 'killing'. (Freudian slip)

Things are so transparent!



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:43 PM
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reply to post by rickymouse
 


rickymouse
Its always good to research..The average American never knows when there going to get lay ed off a job and be left with no medical insurance Ive seen it happen right here in my family ..
I'm not saying that will happen to you but its always good to investigate options..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:46 PM
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reply to post by Egyptia
 


To us this is transparent but to many it is not. The system they have created also drives up the cost to the pharma companies, with lawyers and the government getting their fair share. I'm going to keep researching this stuff till I can figure out everything. I'm finishing my medical training I guess, at least this is much more interesting than college. Maybe I will finally get a chance to leave this reality and go back to where I belong. This is a crazy way to finish my learning about true medicine. Maybe I can get certified in homeopathic medicine somehow.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:48 PM
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reply to post by Egyptia
 


Egyptia
I agree its highway robbery the pharmaceutical companies know it also..There lining there pockets while the rest of us pay the price and they could make the price of meds cheaper but thats not going to happen..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 10:55 PM
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Since its tabled, here is a breakdown of big pharma lobbying.

But, as you read, understand that this number doesn't include campaign contributions and also tends to exclude "stealth" lobbying ( backdooring your agenda into the lobby for other causes. Huge pharma companies often own - or are owned - by corporations that deal in many other things. If big pharma has an interest it can use those subsidiary businesses to lobby, from a totally different POV for laws that assist big pharma ).

Just Google a bit and it all starts to become clear... including the idiocy we purchase into when we accept that the reason pharmaceutical companies have to charge so much for their medications is research and development. It's absurd to the nth degree.

~Heff



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 11:11 PM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Thanks for the link Heff..I'm reading into this for sure..So far what Ive seen it is absurd and disgusting..peace,sugarcookie1



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 11:16 PM
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reply to post by sugarcookie1
 


Great Thread !!!



Take advantage, anyway you can, I say. As long as its legal.......






posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 11:16 PM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Lobbying is down, how are campaign contributions doing? That is probably where the majority is going now. Also the fines are sort of like bribes to government agencies. Give them money for their rising salaries and everything is fine



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 11:50 PM
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reply to post by sonnny1
 

sonnny1
Thank you so much for posting..Its all legal..peace,sugarcookie1





 
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