According to Consumers Union almost a third of people, including asthma patients, did not fill drug prescriptions as directed. Some didn’t even take their prescription to their drugstore, and some others even skipped doses or cut pills in half to save on expenses.
But economic cut back can lead to a worse situation.
If you stop taking your medicine, you could end up paying much more for ER visits and hospital stays than you could pay for even the most expensive medicines.
“(If you are suffering from seasonal allergy symptoms) asthma drugs can be very expensive,” says Dr. Eric Kleerup, clinical professor of medicine and an asthma specialist at UCLA Medical Center.
People with insurance struggle with them, people without insurance have a horrible time and the risk of hospitalization increases if you don’t take meds.
Here is some advice on what you could do to save on drugs:
* Ask your doctor if he can provide you with some samples.
* Ask him or her if a generic can be a good substitute for a branded drug. If so, find out if the drug is among the generics offered for as little as $3 or $4 per month at many pharmacies.
* Ask the pharmacist if there are any discount coupons that you can use to buy the drugs you are interested in.
* Ask your doctor if you can go for a different and less expensive medicine for which there’s a discount offer or coupon. Don’t ever feel embarrassed to ask him or her as doctors are used to being asked these kinds of questions from their patients.
* Try to find out whether you qualify for free or reduced-cost asthma drugs through the Partnership for Prescription Assistance
But there are other options you could try, such as:
* Trying to understand what it is that triggers your seasonal allergy symptoms to manifest, such as pets or seasonal allergens which would enable to switch to a less expensive drug or drop to a lower dose. Moving down a dose level for Advair, for example, can lower the medicine’s cost from about $240 a month to $209 a month, based on drugstore.com prices.
* Trying to reduce the need for the newly expensive emergency inhalers by using maintenance drugs as instructed.
* Considering a less expensive, reduced-quantity supply of rescue medication. Sold by Walmart under the name Relion for $9 per prescription (a doctor has to prescribe it specifically), the version provides only 60 puffs, while the more expensive bottles contain 200 puffs. For some, this may be sufficient.
* Helping your doctor to determine whether you could be put on a cheaper drug or a lower dose.
So, next time you want to save on drugs try to follow the above steps and believe me you will definitely save a lot!