Prescription drugs are life saving. But if you have to pay for them out of your own pocket, they can be very expensive.
There are a variety of ways to cut down on the costs of prescription drugs. If you have a drug plan through your insurance, there are often different “tiers” or levels of drugs that affect how much they cost. For example, a generic drug (which is equivalent to a brand name drug in terms of safety and effectiveness) is going to be less expensive than a brand name drug. This can save you alot of money—particularly if you have to take drugs for a long time. Look for information about generic drugs on your prescription drug plan or insurance website. Your pharmacist may be able to help you with this as well.
In addition, you might check to see if there are any mail-order programs which will allow you to buy several months of prescription drugs at a reduced rate.
AARP sponsors a Drug $aving Tool that can help you find a less expensive, but equally effective medications. The site includes information from Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs.
Several stores in Anne Arundel County offer a 30 day supply of certain generics for $4.00 including Target, Walmart, and Sam's Club (you don't need to be a member).
For certain people, there are programs that can help get free or reduced-cost prescription drugs. These prescription assistance programs are generally offered by pharmaceutical companies and each has it's own eligibility criteria. You can get access to information about many of these programs through an organization called Partnership for Prescription Assistance. You fill out an application indicating what drugs you take and information about yourself (generally indicating that you don't have access to drug coverage and that you can demonstrate financial need). You are then provided information about what programs you may be eligible for. For more information: http://www.pparx.org/en/prescription_assistance_programs or call: 1-888-477-2669.
If you are on Medicare (program for people over 65 or disabled), you have access to prescription drug coverage. Here is more information from the Medicare program about the different types of plans that are available to you depending on where you live: https://www.medicare.gov/find-a-plan/questions/home.aspx
Also if you're on Medicare, you may qualify for the Maryland Senior Prescription Drug Assistance Program (SPDAP) if your income is at or below 300% of poverty (under $33,510/year for a family of 1; under $45,390 for a family of 2 etc.). The program will pay up to $35.00 per month towards your premium cost as long as you're enrolled in a Medicare prescription drug plan. It will also pay 95% of the entire drug cost while you are in the “doughnut hole” of a Medicare drug plan (where you are paying for drug benefits yourself). Here is more information about the SPDAP program: http://www.marylandspdap.com/Home/tabid/52/Default.aspx or you can call 1-800-551-5995.