Underrated Ways to Fight Back Against Rising Medication Costs

One of the reasons it’s important to have health insurance is that you may need financial help covering the cost of medication. It’s estimated that pharmaceutical companies are raising prices on more than 700 medications this year, so if your bills start to rise, you won’t be alone.

But that won’t necessarily ease the blow to your wallet. So if you’ve already found that you’re looking at higher medication costs in 2024, here are a few underrated strategies that could help you save money.

1. Make sure your pharmacy has the right information on file

Maybe you’ve gotten a new insurance ID card this year, only you’ve yet to present that at your local pharmacy. If you go to fill a prescription, you might end up paying more if your pharmacist doesn’t have the right information on file. 

In that case, what might happen is that your insurance is billed but your claim is rejected, leaving you to pay the full price of whatever medication you’re taking. So if you see a jump in your prescription costs, the first thing it pays to do is make sure your pharmacy used the correct information to submit its claim in the first place. 

2. Switch your medications

Some medications simply do not have a generic version available. And that’s a shame, because often, switching over to generics will result in big savings. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make a switch, period.

If your medication costs are rising this year, talk to your doctor about alternative drugs that might work to address your condition(s). Perhaps there are two equally good formulas on the market that work for your situation. If one results in a $25 monthly copay while the other costs you $90, then the former clearly makes more sense if you’re not compromising on effectiveness. And your doctor should be able to confirm that’s not the case.

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To put it another way, your doctor probably isn’t going to suggest an alternative medication that isn’t going to get the job done just to save you money. If anything, at that point, they may try to help by providing you with free samples or appealing claims your insurance company may have rejected. 

3. Look into assistance programs 

Many pharmaceutical companies run patient assistance programs that provide discounted or even free medication to those who can’t afford the cost of their pills. You can use this database to see if the medications you take qualify for one of these programs.

From there, expect to have to meet certain eligibility requirements. You may, for instance, have to provide proof of income. But do know that while pharmaceutical companies are clearly in the business of making money, they’re not always completely devoid of compassion. And you never know when you might qualify for a break on the pills you need to take.

Rising medication costs could end up wreaking serious havoc on your budget. But if you follow these tips, you may find that you’re able to lower your costs and avoid a scenario where you even have to think about skipping medications or dosages due to financial constraints.

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