Do Mail-Order Pharmacies Help You Save Cash on Prescription Drugs?
You might be trying to save money when it comes to buying your prescriptions. Or maybe you just don’t want to drive yourself to your local drugstore. Either way, using a mail-order pharmacy to purchase your medication and supplies can be the smart option available.
Ordering Through Mail-Order Pharmacies
If you currently have health insurance, it would be best to call your health insurance provider and ask if they have any partnership with a particular mail-order pharmacy. You can also opt to check your health insurer’s website and determine how to place an order.
Once you already found a specific mail-order pharmacy, you can ask your doctor to send you a prescription. You can then order online or through the mail by filling out an order form. Moreover, after you send the order form, your order will usually arrive within a week in bulk (most of the time, it is a 90-day supply).
What Medications Can’t Be Mailed?
Mail-order pharmacies are a good option for maintenance drugs. An example of this would be blood pressure meds. However, if you urgently need a prescription, say, an antibiotic to treat your infection, a mail-order pharmacy would not be the best choice.
Are mail-order pharmacies and online pharmacies the same?
The answer is no.
Unlike mail-order pharmacies, online pharmacies can operate anywhere worldwide. This means that whatever they sell may not be subject to any US laws (i.e., laws that regulate the selling of medicines in the country). Moreover, online pharmacies are usually not in partnership with your health insurance. However, some may take insurance.
Benefits of Using a Mail Order Pharmacy
The following are the benefits of using a mail-order pharmacy can provide:
You can get the convenience of having your 90-day supply of medication delivered to your home. This means you don’t have to drive to your local drugstore just to fill up your prescriptions. Moreover, most of the time, you only get a maximum 30-day supply of medications at your local pharmacy.
You may save some cash.
Your health plan might have lower copayments for medications if you opt to use a mail-order pharmacy than buying through a regular pharmacy. Furthermore, you get to purchase your medicines in bulk. This tends to be cheaper than purchasing your medication little by little.
Drawbacks of Using a Mail Order Pharmacy
Below are the disadvantages of using a mail-order pharmacy in buying your prescription drugs:
Mail Delivery Issues
Mail-order pharmacy uses the postal service to deliver your package. Hence, your order might be at risk of being lost or mishandled during delivery.
Using a Mail Order Pharmacy Can Be Slow
It might take a long time before the package reaches your home. Hence, it is vital to plan ahead before you choose to use a mail-order pharmacy. Moreover, it usually takes a week or two (at most) before you can receive your package.
No Personal Connection With Your Pharmacist
Using a mail order pharmacy means you don’t have any close contact with your pharmacist. Buying in a local drugstore can give you close contact with your pharmacist. This means he or she can advise you about side effects or interactions concerning the medicine you purchased.
Other Ways to Save Cash on Meds
The following are additional ways you can use to save money on your meds:
Make Use of Generics
Generic drugs are more affordable and have the same active ingredients brand name drugs contain. This means both have the same effectiveness. Furthermore, they only differ in other characteristics that do not affect their performance.
Try Out Coupons
RX discounts can help you save money in purchasing your meds. There are a lot of websites that can give you free discount coupons. All you need to do is search for them. Moreover, always make sure your local drugstore accepts such coupons.
Consider Patient Assistance Programs
Patient assistance programs are usually under the management of pharmaceutical companies. This program aims to help consumers that don’t have any insurance. Furthermore, they usually offer low-cost prescription drugs. Some are even free of charge.
In order to know if you can qualify, you have to fill out an application form. Once you submit the form, the pharmaceutical company will review your application. If you qualify, you can then enjoy the benefits under the patient assistance program.
Ask Your Doctor for Free Samples
It wouldn’t hurt to ask for samples and save money. Doctors tend to have free samples given by drug representatives. You can ask your doctor about this and try out the sample.
If you want to save some cash on your prescriptions, a mail-order pharmacy can help you with that. However, it would be best to keep in mind that using this purchasing method also has its disadvantages. Furthermore, if you urgently need medication, using a mail-order pharmacy won’t make any sense.