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Cheap generic medications.

Generic medications offer a cheaper alternative to branded drugs, allowing patients to access necessary treatments without compromising their budgets. These medications are as safe and effective as their branded counterparts, as they are subjected to rigorous testing and regulation before receiving approval for marketing by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or other relevant authorities. Learn how to find cheap generic medications below.

While not all prescription medications have generics available for them, there are in fact hundreds of drugs that offer this option including popular RX such as Viagra, Lexapro, Zoloft, Xanax, Cymbalta, Vyvanse,and  Flomax. The cost will be a fraction of what the name brand medication costs as well. It is always a good idea to ask a doctor, pharmacist or medical professional whether a generic medication is available for a certain condition. There is also FDA information on generics.

Benefits of generic medications

Comparable Efficacy and Safety: Generic medications contain the same active ingredients, dosage, and mode of administration as branded drugs. This ensures that they provide equivalent therapeutic effects at a much lower cost to the patient. For example, Metformin is a generic drug used in managing Type 2 Diabetes. Its branded equivalents such as Glucophage carry a higher price tag, but the efficacy in controlling blood sugar levels remains the same.

The US Food and Drug Administration will approve all generics for use by patients. There is a rigorous testing procedure put into place by the federal government agency. This will ensure that they are all as safe to use and also as effective as their name brand equivalent. However, a patient should never take them without approval from their doctor (or another medical professional).

Significant Cost Reduction of Generics: On average, generic drugs cost 80-85% less than branded medications. This cheaper price can result in substantial savings, especially for individuals on long-term medication. A study by the Association for Accessible Medicines showed that in the United States, patients and the healthcare system saved $313 billion in a single year by opting for generics, with a total of $2.2 trillion saved in the decade between 2009 and 2019.

While the exact price of a generic medication will vary, the cost will generally be a fraction of the name brand equivalent. Some major retail pharmacies, such as Wal-Mart, Target, CVS, and others may sell them for under $10. That can be compared to some name brand medications that cost hundreds of dollars per year or more.

 

 

 

Expanded Insurance Coverage: Insurance companies often favor cheap generic medications and include them in their formularies to manage costs, which means the patient benefits from the cheaper generic RX as well as the insurance company. This could mean lower co-payments and better coverage for patients. For example, a patient prescribed Atorvastatin, a generic medication for cholesterol management instead of its branded version Lipitor, may find that their insurance covers a larger portion of the cost. There will also tend to be additional incentives given to consumers by health insurance companies to use a generic prescription drug for their condition.

Sources of cheap generic medications

As noted, there are several places that offer discounts to patients. Or they set a price on them that is always low and competitive. The places to turn to include major retailers, local pharmacies, online websites, WalMart, Target and even big box stores such as Costco. There are some steps that shoppers should take though to ensure they get the best deal. The tips, and steps to take, are below.

First, do not always rely on a health insurance provider for generic meds (for those that are fully insured). There are some instances in which a pharmacy will list the retail price lower than what the insurance company provides it at or for a cheaper price than even Medicaid or Medicare. Ask the pharmacy if there are any discrepancies there, and if the retail price is lower, of course accept that.

A number of non-profits as well as charitable services allow patients to comparison shop. Or they may offer free coupons to buy generic medications to get even bigger discounts. There are in fact several different options available, and they include the following.

  • Needymeds is a price comparison site for generics, name brand medications, and even health insurance plans. Continue with Needymeds prescription comparisons.
     
  • Blink Health is a comparison shopping site. It will help patients find the lowest priced generics for their medical needs, whether they have health insurance or not. Continue with Blink Health.
     
  • Partnership for Prescription Assistance is a national non-profit. They focus on directing patients to low cost health care, including generic medications. Learn more on Partnership for prescription programs.
  • GoodRX provides free RX coupons, discounts, and rebates for generic medications. The non-profit also refers patients to other financial aid programs. More on GoodRx.

 

 

 

 

Free generic medications may be offered from pharmaceutical companies and their patient assistance programs. Almost every single drug company offer these. Note the programs tend to be for low income patients, seniors, and the uninsured. Read more about patient assistance programs for uninsured.

Savings on generic medications from stores and pharmacies

Be sure to get prescription drugs at one of the major retail pharmacies. Generics are much less costly at stores including the following. Wal-Mart; CVS; Target; Rite Aid; and other major chains. A “local mom and pop” or independent pharmacy may not offer the same price points as some of the national chains. In addition, the savings can be enhanced from prescription drug coupons.

Patient Assistance Programs (PAP) provide savings on, or cheap generic medications. Many manufacturers of generic medications offer patient assistance programs, which provide medications at little or no cost to eligible individuals. For instance, if a patient requires the antidepressant Fluoxetine, they might get it for free or at a reduced cost through such a program, instead of purchasing the branded version, Prozac, at full price. There are also PAP for generic Ambien, Adderall, Zyrtec and many other medications Get an application to patient assistance.

There are also other online pharmacies sell low cost generic medications. However always be cautious in using these. Do research, ensure they are regulated, that they have been in operation for an extended period, and that there are not complaints from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). In general, online discount pharmacies can be used to buy inexpensive generic drugs, but there may generally be slightly higher risk in them. Find a listing of websites that help with prescription drug buying.Cheap generic medications

Chain stores (including Wal-Mart and Kroger among others) and pharmacies (including Rite-Aid and Walgreens) administer prescription drug saving plans on generic medications. They may offer one medication or 30, 60, or 90 day supplies. Most of the generic medication plans at retailers are free, but some have a minimal enrollment fee. Learn more on generic drug savings from chain stores.

Another tip is to get a longer supply of generic medications. There may be a bigger discount/lower price given on a 3-month supply (or 90 day) vs. a one-month supply. Now those savings will not strictly be for generic medications, but rather any type of prescription drug will tend to be cheaper when a larger supply is bought.

Concussion - Save money using generics

Opting for cheap, FDA approved generic medications is a safe and effective way for individuals, including people with a low-income or no health insurance, to manage their medical needs without incurring exorbitant costs. By understanding and utilizing the resources available, patients can make informed choices and use affordable generic medications that benefit both their health and finances.

 

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By Jon McNamara

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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