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SAVING WITH $AM: Cutting prescription costs

Posted at 7:08 AM, Mar 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-09 09:11:49-05

Keeping up with the costs of prescription drugs can be tough, but you can get a better handle on your budget if you stick with a few tips.

Good Morning Tucson anchor Samantha Cortese relays five pieces of advice offered up by Consumer Reports:

1. Talk to your doctor -- Only six percent of patients found out about the cost of a new prescription from their physicians. Doctors can tell you if you no longer need a certain medication. You can also ask for a 90-day prescription rather than a 30-day one, allowing you to make one co-pay instead of three.

2. Choose your insurance plan wisely -- High-deductible plans have lower premiums, but force you to pay a larger chunk of your drug costs. If your insurance drops or reduces your coverage during the year, your doctor can help by appealing to your insurance company for an exception to cover the drug anyway.

3. Shop around -- Many chain and big-box pharmacies such as Rite Aid, Walgreens and Walmart offer hundreds of generic drugs for just a few dollars for cash-paying, non-insurance customers. Make it a habit to ask the pharmacist whether you'll pay less by bypassing your insurance.

4. Look for coupons online -- Check out sites such as GoodRX.com, but be aware of frauds that operate outside the U.S.
 
5. Ask your pharmacist for a better deal -- A good pharmacist will do some digging if you ask if any cheaper options are available.