Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Getting ahead of Rx costs

With age of majority, my kids are responsible for OOP medical costs, it is just reality. I am left with only* having to cover my own costs, which are escalating. I take several maintenance medications, including a few OTC vitamins, and eye drops.
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 My current insurance is a bit complicated: all charges up to the first $4000 are the patient's responsibility, once the $4000 is hit, we move to a second, $2000 deductible which has a 10% copay or patient responsibity if in plan. Once the $2000 is hit, insurance pays 100% of in network costs. Non urgent appointments, RX are held off if possible, until we are in the second, $2000 deductible portion of the insurance, which we are currently in. Even with chronic medical issues and maintenance RX. it has taken some time to eat through this second deductible. Factor in that our current insurance is only thru to the end of August (hoping to have found work by then, with benefits), and I am using the calendar to make sure that we refill our meds while still on this plan. Several of us use a 90 day mail order pharmacy for some additional savings.

I've learned to look up copay assistance programs on the Internet, whenever a new RX comes in to play. Previously, we had to pay a copay, depending upon which tier the drug is placed on. With my insurance on line, I am able to see what I previously paid, what I am currently paying for the same medication. Toss in that my rhumatologist is playing around with my meds until we find the right one for me.
-rescue inhaler (one/year) $40 last year, will be $7.17 this year
-Restasis eye drops $125.17/90 days but I am on the copay assistance program so $0
-Systane eye drops OTC: I've been able to get these on sale, with coupons, paying with my HSA, currently $0 OOP, but once my HSA is drained, I will be OOP
-PSA drugs and vitamins to counteract side effects were $5.59, $0.50, $0.53-I am now off all of that, and will move to a biologic with a $118/month copay. Again, I have signed up for the co-pay assistance program, will pay $0
-Kidney meds: $0.53, $17.39-both are 90 day RX
-Vit D OOC-I look for BOGO, add coupons and have been paying with HSA funds. Like the systane drops, once those funds are gone, they are gone
-GERD meds $88.07/90 days but with co-pay assistance of $70/month, I will start paying $0
-my psoriasis skin Rx's are $$0.67 and $27.64/monthly. These are generics.

I will next look into what my cost would be on the generic meds I am currently taking, compared to name brand with an assistance card program, if they exist. Beyond that, I don't know how else to reduce this medical cost.

Medical insurance and costs weighs heavily on my mind as I aeait finding my next job with benefits. Once that issue is settled, I will be relieved.


Ms. Sandie said...

Medications are a stress, I totally can understand. I hope you do get a new position with healthcare soon.

Busy Bee said...

Medical costs (even with insurance) are a huge chunk of our expenses. We have good insurance, but last year our out of pocket expenses exceeded $12,000. Sigh. However, I am grateful to have the insurance because it could have been a lot worse.

We do have our doctor's prescribe generic whenever they can and we shop around to do the best we can with what is available.

Sounds like you are on top of the game.