Published August 13th, 2019 by Stephanie
Did you know that when it comes to spending medicine, Americans, on average, spend more than any other country, at $1200 per year according to OEDC, the Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development? Of course, one part of this equation is that when you live in the most advanced country in the world, with the most advanced medical treatments and medicines available, some of those things are going to cost more than they would in other countries that don’t have access.
But while paying the price for advanced medical treatment and medicine is understandable, not every American can easily cover that cost. In 2017, for example, the statistics indicated over 70% of Americans made less than $100,000 per year, so being able to ignore the pricing on medicine without worrying about the impact on finances is not something most Americans have the luxury of being able to do.
Fortunately, there’s more than one way to buy medicine in the USA. One solution to getting better prices is to sign up for, and start using, a prescription discount card. But what is this, how does it work, and what are the benefits?
First, it’s important to understand that when you pay lower prices for your medicine in the USA, you’re not making much of a dent in hurting the bottom line of American pharmaceutical companies. While it’s true that the latest, most advanced medical treatments and medicines will command premium prices, other medicines have been around for decades, such as insulin, that continue to rise in price every year, despite there being no real need to do so. So why does it happen?
Because pharmaceutical companies can do it. They are running for-profit businesses and are supporting their employees, as well as answering to shareholders, so since no law says that they must retain insulin prices—for example—at lower prices, they don’t do it. This is why Canada charges only $30 for insulin—because there are laws in place to enforce affordability—while the same batch of insulin is $300 in the USA. American insulin is not inherently better than Canadian insulin, but American companies have the legal freedom to make it as expensive as they want for maximum profit, so, understandably they do, since there’s no law in place to stop them.
This is where a prescription discount card can come in. There are some services, like USA Rx, that offer a free, no-hassle, no subscription way to get discounts on a lot of different medicine. All you have to do is present the card when making a purchase, and if the medicine you want qualifies for the discount, and if the pharmacy you’re at is affiliated with the many groups that recognize the prescription discount card, then you’ll get the price lowered.
Depending on the medicine you want to buy, you may get a discount from anywhere between 10% and 75% off the final purchase price! And the best part is any American can qualify to hold this card. It is not insurance, and you do not have to be insured with anyone to qualify for and start using this card.
There is are organizations within the pharmaceutical industry known as Pharmacy Benefits Managers. These groups administrate various aspects of the industry. Logistically, they can be responsible for compiling the lists of medicines and drugs that are needed at hospitals, or available in stores, due to demand. Financially, they can work with pharmaceutical companies to agree on the prices they will set their medicine and other drugs at.
Different companies, such as USA Rx strike partnerships and agreements with these PMBs, getting wholesale price discounts that are then passed on to the cardholders. All you have to do is go to a prescription discount card service, such as the USA Rx website and apply for a prescription discount card. Once you get it, present it at a pharmacy when making a purchase and if the medicine you want is covered under the discount card, and the pharmacy itself is partnered with one of these PMBs, they will recognize the card and apply the discount.
When you decide to start using a prescription discount card, you’ll enjoy many different benefits from it. Among the perks are:
Of course, the biggest reason you want this card is to pay less, and you will. It depends on the medicine that you’re interested in, but discounts can range from between 10% and 75%, so some very significant savings are available that will make a big difference to your financial situation, especially if these are recurring purchases.
This isn’t a service; you won’t have to sign up and then start paying a recurring monthly cost for membership, subscription, or other perks. Once you have your discount card, you’re good to go, and you can use it without worrying about whether it’s still valid or not.
While some products or services may restrict themselves only to the continental United States, Americans living in Hawaii or Alaska don’t have to miss out with a USA Rx card. It is available in all 50 states, so it doesn’t matter if you’re on the mainland or not, you’re still covered.
While it’s true that a prescription discount card is not necessarily 100% recognized at every single pharmacy you go to the way cash is, your odds are still good that a pharmacy near you is likely to honor it. A good discount card program, like the USA Rx one, has widespread partnerships. In this case, over 60,000 pharmacies in all 50 states will recognize and apply the discount once presented with this card.
If you want to be smarter with your money, but still gain access to the medicine that may be vital for your comfort, health, or that of your loved ones, get a prescription discount card. Why pay more for the medicine you need if you don’t have to?