Your health insurance plan may or may not cover the cost of prescription drugs. If you are receiving a health insurance package from your employer, the coverage you receive is dependent upon what your employer is willing to spend, so you may not have prescription drug coverage. Although you have more control over your coverage if you are purchasing a health insurance plan out of pocket, you still may not be able to afford a plan that offers to cover the cost of medications.
In either of these scenarios, you may be left having to purchase your own prescription medications, which your doctor feels are necessary to treat and/or cure your condition. However, there is hope for those who do not have prescription drug coverage as part of their health insurance package. Here are some tips on how to afford the medications you need, even if you have to pay for them out of your own pocket.
Purchase Generic Prescriptions
When you go to the pharmacy with your prescription, the pharmacist will ask you if you have any health insurance, and he will be able to determine if the plan you are on covers prescription drugs. Be sure to mention that you are willing to forego the name brand prescriptions for a generic brand instead.
Even if you forget to mention that you want a generic version of the prescription, your pharmacist may go ahead and find it for you if he knows you do not have coverage. He may first call your doctor to confirm that a generic is acceptable to dispense to you, and this will save you a lot of money when you go to pick up your medications. Do not be afraid of using generic versions of drugs. They are just as effective as name brand drugs, but they are much more affordable.
State Assistance Programs
Some states offer pharmaceutical assistance programs that can help cover the cost of your prescription drugs, easing the burden on you, especially if you are on long-term medications.
Consider Seeing a Low-Cost or Free Clinic
These clinics are great for those who are uninsured and for those who are hoping to get prescription medications at a discount or even at no cost. Physicians at clinics are just as effective as a regular doctor, but they are perfect for those who cannot afford expensive medications and medical exams.
Order Your Medications Online or Through the Mail
If you have a chronic condition that requires daily medication, you may want to forego the pharmacy and instead purchase your medications directly from online and mail-order pharmacies, which can provide the same medications at deeply discounted rates. You can even consider ordering your medication in bulk, storing the extra supplies so that you save money upfront and do not need to worry about reordering your medications sooner rather than later. Because there are so many options out there, shop around for the best rates, and choose a company that has a good reputation.
Shop Around for Health Insurance
While shopping around for health insurance quotes on sites like medicalhealthinsurancetoday.org, make sure to decipher what exactly is going to be covered under each plan. Most plans are more expensive because they offer more coverage, but you may be able to find an affordable plan that fits your needs and even provides coverage for medications.
Prescription drugs can be incredibly costly so keep the above tips in mind.