• How to Save Money on Prescription Drugs
  • Thanks to Ken Rubinwitch for providing some of this valuable information and for inspiring us to look for more. We'd like also like to thank Frank Kaiser, who gave us permission to reprint much of the information below, which is from his great web site www.suddenlysenior.com.
  • The cost of medications can devastate a budget. But the many cards and prescription plans can be very confusing. The following list may help you decide which one is for you. To be eligible for all of the following plans you must be enrolled in Medicare, have no other prescription coverage, and have certain income limitations, usually based on your adjusted gross annual income.
  • Together Rx Card offers savings of approximately 20%-40% off the amount usually paid for prescriptions. The founding members of this prescription program are Novartis, Abbott Laboratories, Astra Zeneca, Aventis, Ortho-McNeil, Bristol Meyer Squibb, Johnson & Johnson,GSL and Janssen. Annual income limits are $28,000 for individuals and $38,000 for individuals. E-mail www.togetherRx.com or call 1-800-865-7211.
  • Glaxo Smith Kline's Orange Card saves seniors 30-40% off retail prices of prices of Advair, Serevent, and Flonase as well as other drugs. Annual income should be at or below $30,000 per person or $40,000 for a couple. Call 1-888-672-6436.
  • Pfizer's Share Card gets you a month's worth of any Pfizer drug for $15.00 at your local pharmacy. Income should be below $18,000 for individuals and $24,000 for couples.
  • Merck Patient Assistance Program provides medicine free of charge, with a 3-month supply delivered to your home. To qualify, yearly gross income should be less than $18,000 per person or $24,000 a couple. Call 1-800-727-5400 for more information.
  • Lilly Answers Card provides a 30-day supply of Lilly medications for just $12.00. Your annual gross income should be below $18,000 for singles and $24,000 for couples. Call 1-877-795-4559.
  • Novartis' CareCard saves senior citizens 30%-40% off of retail prices. Your income must be less than $26,0000 for an individual or $35,000 for a couple. Call 1-866-974-2273.
  • The PharmacyCareOneCard, is a discount card which the National Association of Chain Drug Stores hopes will curb manufacturers' cards. It saves 20-40% on about 150 brand-name drugs. Income limits are $28,000 for individuals and $38,000 for couples. Call 1-703-837-4244.
  • If you qualify for one card, but not another, consider asking your doctor to substitute a similar drug made by the manufacturer whose card you have.
  • Another resource you may find valuable is The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which help senior citizens with answers to their prescription medication questions. Call 1-800-MEDICARE.
  • If your annual income is less than about $14,000, you're probably eligible for free drugs from most manufacturers. An example is Bayer's Indigent Patient Program, which provides you with up to a 30-day-supply of most Bayer pharmaceuticals free. Annual income must be at or below the federal government poverty level, a place where over 10 million seniors unfortunately reside. Call 1-800-998-9180. Another way for lower-income seniors to get free drugs is through The Medicine Program. You need to complete a list of all your prescriptions and send it in with $5 for each medicine. They send back each specific manufacturer's forms for free drugs. Call 1-573-996-7300 for details.
  • If you wish to compare your discounted drug costs with those available by purchasing your drugs in Canada. Go to http://www.suddenlysenior.com/canadiandrugstores.html for complete details, a list of Canadian drug stores and their toll-free numbers. With the generous permission of Frank Kaiser, we reprint some of that information here for those of you without access to a computer. There are no income or age restrictions in the purchase of Canadian medications.
  • There is nothing illegal about buying drugs in Canada. For years, Americans have been driving across the border to buy prescription drugs at lower government-regulated Canadian prices. Now, Canadian drugstores are marketing mail-order drugs directly, offering anyone in the US with a valid prescription the benefits of Canadian price controls. Some members of Congress even encourage the practice by listing Canadian pharmacies on their Web sites.
  • Here is how it works. For current prices, either call or visit the Web sites of some of the many reputable Canadian drug stores offering this service. Since each store has different prices as well as varying shipping costs, etc., comparisons can be tricky. However, most end up within a few dollars of one another.
  • Once you decide on a druggist, simply fax your prescriptions for a 90-day supply, renewable in three months. Furnish your credit card number and you'll have your drugs in a week for an average of 40% less than what you have been paying here in the States.
  • Services vary. Some pharmacies will have a doctor call to review your prescription. Most pharmacies don't. DoctorSolve charges $39 every six months for this personal service. To make up for this, the pharmacy charges a bit less for drugs so you end up paying about the same and getting the safety of a doctor checking your order with you. (Canadian law requires that a Canadian physician rewrite the prescription) There also will be a shipping charge.
  • Some of the Canadian pharmacies listed on this site are:
  • DoctorSolve, http://www.doctorsolve.com/ or call 1-866.732-0305.
  • Canada Drugs, http://www.canadiadrugs.com/ or call 1-866.444-3784.
  • Canada Meds, http://www.canadameds.com or call 1-877.542-3330.
  • Canada Pharm, http://www.canadapharm.ca or call 1-877.266-6608.
  • Maple Leaf Meds, http://www.mapleleafmeds.com.
  • Pharmacy-Online, http://www.pharmacy-online.com or call 1-877-530-3743.
  • Pharmacy.ca http://www.pharmacy.ca or call 1-800-727-5048.
  • Others web sites suggested were www.halfoffmeds.com and www.crossborderpharmacy.com.
  • A word of warning: We have not personally checked out all of these sites so use your own judgment in following through with this information.