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Thursday, May 02, 2013

Can I Really Get Cheaper Meds If I Don't Use My Insurance?

Yes! Many retailers offer discount prices on generics that may be cheaper than your co-pay. We asked our Secret Shoppers to price common generic drugs at more than 200 pharmacies around the U.S. and they found some real deals if you use cash or credit card instead of insurance. For instance, instead of paying a $10 drug co-pay for the generic version of escitalopram (Lexapro), you could instead pay just $7 at Costco.

Also, many retailers, including Kroger, Target, and Walmart, offer long lists of discount generic drugs that cost $4 for a 30-day supply or $10 for 90 days. Common examples include generic versions of the diabetes drug metformin (Glucophage) and antidepressant fluoxetine (Prozac), and even drugs to lower cholesterol, such as lovastatin (Mevacor) and pravastatin (Pravachol).



Anonymous said...

This is very true. My husband lost his job and therefore his insurance went too. We get his meds at K-Mart and found out that his meds are cheaper when you don't have an insurance plan.

Steven Rumney said...

Many other medical procedures are less expensive if you do not use your insurance. At our company we have an insurance plan with a high deductible ($2,000 for employee)coupled to an Health Savings Account. Because of the high deductible many of the health care costs of our employees are paid out-of-pocket. This has forced our employees to become health care consumers for the first time because now they have "skin in the game". One of our employees was advised that the charge for a a specific medical procedure was $1,600 when run through the insurance system. So rather than running this procedure through the insurance and paying the $1,6000 out of pocket he was able to negotiate a deal in cash for less than than $400.

Makes you wonder what the true cost of this procedure really is. Think about going to buy a used car that is quoted at $20,000 but the used car salesman says you can drive it off the lot for $5,000 cash! I think you would question the integrity of the pricing process.

Consumers are not obligated to use their insurance. Since many people do not meet their deductible limits this may provide an opportunity to save some money.