Deals can sometimes be found simply by calling a few nearby pharmacies for price checks before dropping off a prescription. Some pharmacies get their drugs from a wholesaler, which has purchased the drugs from the manufacturer. But other pharmacies are able to buy directly from the manufacturer, cut out the middleman, and offer lower prices. As a result, the drug store on one corner may sell a particular medication at a lower price than the store on the opposite corner.
Big box stores and some grocery chains may also have lower prices. Such stores offer 30- and 90-day supplies of dozens of generic drugs for as little as $4 to $10. A list of covered medications should be available from the in-store pharmacy.
Another way to find lower-cost medications is by joining a prescription assistance program. These may provide free medications or offer vouchers and coupons. Using a free, Internet-based prescription price finder can also help. All that's required is a ZIP code and medication name. Type those into a search box, and the search engine will display the drug's retail price at all nearby pharmacies.
Read the full-length article: "Saving money on your prescription medications"
Also in the February 2014 issue of the Harvard Health Letter:
- Ward off dementia by lowering blood sugar
- Gentle exercises to strengthen core muscles and improve balance
- Do air purifiers help ease breathing?
The Harvard Health Letter is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $16 per year. Subscribe at www.health.harvard.edu/health or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).
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