June 30, 2017

Michigan Health Lab: Want to Save on Prescription or Over-the-Counter Drugs? Speak Up

If you feel hamstrung by the high price of medication, here’s what to tell your doctor and pharmacist, plus tips on how to cut out-of-pocket costs

Prescription drugs graphic

Even if you have prescription drug coverage through a job, Medicare or Medicaid, the cost of medications can add up every month — especially if you take more than two.

But have you ever told your doctors how much you’re paying out of pocket for their prescriptions? Or talked to your pharmacist about lower-cost options?

If not, you’re not alone.

A new poll finds that while most Americans over age 50 take two or more prescription drugs, most haven’t talked to their health providers about what the drugs cost them.

And 1 in 4 people over 50 say drug prices pose a burden to their finances. But only half of these most-affected people have spoken to a doctor about costs.

The findings surprised Preeti Malani, M.D., the University of Michigan doctor who heads the National Poll on Healthy Aging, which produced the findings with support from U-M and AARP.