Video: How to Keep Prescription Drug Costs Down
Kevin Soden: Hi, I’m Dr. Kevin Soden. Welcome to Medicare Made Clear. I’m here with Seema Siddiqui, who’s a pharmacist with Target. We’re helping real people get answers to their Medicare questions. Let’s take a look.
Senior Woman: My pharmacist told me that my prescription drugs are going up. How can I keep those costs down?
Seema Siddiqui: My first suggestion is that you become familiar with your Part D plan’s formulary. That’s the list of drugs that your plan covers. Print it out and share it with your doctor so he or she can reference it when ordering prescriptions. My second suggestion is to choose generics over name-brand medications.
Soden: But all generics aren’t the same. Can you explain the differences?
Siddiqui: Of course. There are generic-equivalent drugs and generic-alternative drugs. Generic-equivalent medications have the same active ingredients, dosage, intended use and effects as the original name-brand drug. Generic-alternative drugs treat similar conditions as a name-brand drug but contain different active ingredients. While these active ingredients are different, they do come from the same class of medications and provide similar results to the more expensive name-brand drugs.
Soden: Any other suggestions?
Siddiqui: Yes. Shop around because not all drugs cost the same at all pharmacies. But remember, there’s a big benefit to using just one pharmacy. It’s something that far outweighs the minimal cost difference in medications. One-stop shopping helps ensure that all of your prescribed drugs are safe to use together and helps prevent potentially dangerous drug interactions. And don’t forget that a pharmacist can work with your prescriber to review your options from both clinical and cost standpoints.
Soden: Thanks, Seema.
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