Most Expensive Medications for Senior Citizens

The most expensive drugs for older adults are metabolic, respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and central nervous system drugs. Older adults spent nearly $100 billion on prescription drugs in 2010.

This article will focus on the costs of medications and how older adults can save money. You could possibly save thousands of dollars by following the suggestions in this article.

Most Expensive Medications

The following lists contain the most expensive medications that older adults purchase. If you see medication that you’re taking on the list, ask your doctor if you have other options.

Metabolic Drugs:

  • Simvastatin
  • Metformin
  • Crestor
  • Pravastatin
  • Lipitor

Respiratory Drugs:

  • Fexofenadine
  • Proair
  • Advair
  • Singulair
  • Albuterol

Cardiovascular Drugs:

  • Metoprolol
  • Furosemide
  • Hydrochlorothiazide
  • Amlodipine
  • Lisinopril
  • Metoprolol

Gastrointestinal Drugs:

  • Famotidine
  • Omeprazole
  • Nexium
  • Pantoprazole
  • Ranitidine

Central Nervous System Drugs:

  • Aspirin
  • Hydrocodone
  • Alprazolam
  • Ibuprofen
  • Gabapentin

How to Save Money on Prescriptions

Use Generic Drugs

Generic drugs usually cost 80 to 85 percent less than brand-name drugs. Ask your doctor if any generic drugs could replace the brand-name drugs that you’re currently taking. The Food and Drug Administration requires generic drugs to be similar to brand-name drugs. The FDA supervises the quality and performance of generic drugs.

State Programs

Some states have programs that help older adults pay for prescription drugs. If medications cost more or about the same as their income, they may qualify.

Mail-Order Pharmacy

You may save money on most prescription medications if you use a mail-order pharmacy. You’d also receive a large supply, which would save you time because you wouldn’t have to make a trip every month to your local pharmacy.

Shop Around

Compare prices at your local pharmacies and online. You may be able to find discounts for ordering a large supply of medications.

Use American Association of Retired Persons Plan

AARP has a program that provides discounts on medications that have been approved by the FDA. The program covers medications that aren’t covered by Medicare Part D. You can only use Walgreens to fill your prescriptions using this program.

Medicare Drug Plan

A different Medicare drug plan could reduce costs if you pay expensive prices for prescription medications. Research different Medicare drug plans online. You can talk with a counselor at your local State Health Insurance and Assistance Programs office for more information and help.

Pharmacy Discount Cards

Pharmacy discount cards can save older adults 15 to 20 percent on prescription medications. Present your card to the member of staff who’s helping you. They’ll give you two options. The first option is the cost of pharmaceuticals with your insurance. The second option is the cost of the pharmacy discount card; depending on your insurance and medications, buying the discount card could possibly save you more money than insurance would be able to. Decide which of the two options is most affordable, and choose that option.

Don’t get a card that charges enrollment, annual or monthly fees. If the card company needs personal medical information, don’t get the card. It may lead to medical identity theft. Before you get a card, be sure to check with local pharmacies to ensure they accept it.

Ask for Samples

Before you get a prescription filled at one of your local pharmacies, you’ll want to make sure that it doesn’t cause any harsh side effects. Ask your doctor for samples. Manufacturers often offer a 30-day trial or coupon for a discount on the purchase of the drug.

Check Formulary

Ask your doctor what top three medications can treat your condition. Check with your insurer to determine what you’ll have to pay for each medication. Ask about formulary restrictions. Choose the medication that’s the cheapest, and let your doctor know what medication you prefer.

Final Words

If you’re paying expensive prices for prescription medications, it’s worth your time to determine less expensive alternatives. You could possibly be saving thousands of dollars.


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  5. Michael Jordan doesn't just make shoes; he co-owns 1000 North with golfing legend Ernie Els and publisher Marvin Shanken. It sits on a tiny peninsula in Jupiter, Florida, and has four dining areas that each offer a different experience. It provides a full-service restaurant, a lounge area, a casual bar, and an outdoor terrace.

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