How to Save Money When You Need Health Care

If you’re having difficulty paying your bills and face the decision to sacrifice your health care to make ends meet, you’re not alone.  In a recent study, one in three Americans report having problems paying their medical bills.  As a result,  patients are skipping doctor appointments, ceasing or reducing their medication, and postponing surgery or treatment to save money.  Making such changes without consulting your physician is risky and can jeopardize your condition.

Before you take shortcuts with your health, consider the following ways to reduce your medical expenses and increase the value of your health care dollars:

SoupSaladSandwich1.  Continue or start a healthy daily routine of physical activity and nutritious eating to reduce or maintain a healthy weight and ward off illness and disease.  Also, moderate alcohol and eliminate beverages that contain empty calories.

2.  Switch to generic brands for prescription medications under your physician’s advisement.  Generic drugs contain the same active ingredient(s) as the name-brand versions.  Generics are less expensive because the generic drug manufacturer does not invest money in drug research and development or in government approval of a new drug nor does it spend money on media marketing (i.e. print, television, internet, etc.).

Prescription drugsThe Food and Drug Administration requires that generic brands are the same as the brand-name drugs in the following ways:

  • dosage
  • the way it is administered
  • safety
  • strength
  • quality
  • purity

3. Check large warehouse membership club chains (e.g. Costco) that purchase high volumes for savings on prescription drugs. These stores have both onsite and online/mail order pharmacies, so pricing is available online.  Costco will ship your prescription FREE via USPS from Everett, WA (allow 6-11 days to receive your order).   Acceptable insurance plans are listed online.   Continue reading “How to Save Money When You Need Health Care”