To care for the elderly, prescription drugs are essential. Did you know that seniors spend more than 3% of their income on prescription drugs? When you include drugs paid over the counter, the amount of income spent on prescription medication is even higher. Over 66% of the elderly take prescription medication in the U.S. Find out more at https://hpi.georgetown.edu/rxdrugs/. For the aged individuals who live on fixed incomes, it becomes quite challenging to pay for prescription drugs. This is why paying for prescription drugs among seniors is becoming a bigger concern in America. Are you a senior using prescription medication? Well, this article provides an overview of prescription assistance for seniors in the U.S., including programs that provide support to the elderly. Keep reading…
How Can Seniors Better Afford the Cost of Prescription?
- Understand the benefits of your insurance prescription.
- Look for financial support program that assists seniors having difficulties in paying for their prescription medication.
- Try cutting the prescription medication expenses
Prescription assistance programs
Medicaid is a health insurance program administered at the state level and is available for low-income and disabled seniors in the U.S. Please note that the low-income definition depends on your state of residence and your constituent group. That is, whether you are a senior or a healthy adult. For you to be eligible for the Medicaid health insurance program, your income must be less than $2,349. What about your assets? To qualify for this program, your asset value must be less than $2,000. Your home is not included in the assets when determining eligibility to participate in this program. in the U.S., all the Medicaid programs in the 50 states help the seniors in covering the cost of prescription drugs. The benefits can only be enjoyed by the Medicaid health insurance program participants. Want to see if you are qualified for the program? Please learn more about the eligibility requirements at https://www.payingforseniorcare.com/medicaid. For more details about the program benefits, please visit http://medicaidbenefits.kff.org/service.jsp?gr=off&nt=on&so=0&tg=0&yr=4&cat=5&sv=32.
Medicaid Medically Needy Program
Are you not meeting the income requirements of the Medicaid program? Well, you can still get access to prescription assistance through the Medicaid Medically Needy Program. However, you must demonstrate that your prescription medication expenses are higher relative to your income. it is not easy to navigate through this program but you should note that it is available and often act as a safety net for the most vulnerable seniors. 88% of the program’s spending goes directly to assisting elderly persons and the disabled. Read more at https://medicareadvocacy.org/finding-help-to-get-prescription-drugs/#_ftn9.
Medicare is a health insurance program administered at the federal level. It is specifically designed for elderly persons aged 65 years and above. This program is comprised of 4 parts; A, B, C, and D. Medicare part D covers prescription medication costs for the seniors participating in the program. Suffering from limited income? Well, you don’t have to worry. There is a program that can support you. The Extra Help Program is designed to help the low-income seniors cover Medicare Part D costs, including monthly health insurance premiums and copayments. Who qualifies for the Extra Help Program? Having Medicare Health Insurance Coverage? Do you get assistance in paying part B of your health insurance premiums with the Medicare program? Do you receive the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits? Then you qualify for the program assistance automatically. Please note that the program for extra help is not available in all 50 states. But you don’t need to start getting worked up simply because your state does not offer extra support to help you settle your Medicare prescription costs. The states run several programs that can still provide the assistance you need to help you afford your prescription medication. Visit https://www.medicareadvantage.com/prescription-drug-assistance for more details.
Benefit Enrollment Centers (BEC)
BEC is a program that helps seniors by enrolling them in the Medicaid Savings Program, Medicare part D, and Supplementary Security Income. This program is designed to help senior citizens aged 65 years plus. The program also enrolls the seniors in State Pharmacy Assistance Programs (SPAPS). The program can help you apply for prescription assistance programs if you meet the qualifications and get assistance in paying for your prescription medication. Want to find out if there is any Benefit Enrollment Center in your location? Well, visit http://www.ncoa.org/enhance-economic-security/center-for-benefits/becs/ and find out.
Cutting Costs on prescriptions
If you want to easily afford the prescription medication at old age, it is important to come up with ways you can save money, while meeting your health needs. How can you cut prescription costs?
Go for Generic Medications. Did you know that by purchasing generic prescription medication, seniors can save thousands of dollars? According to the Association of Accessible Medicines report in 2016, the purchase of generic prescription medication for seniors generated up to $253 billion. Find more information at https://accessiblemeds.org/resources/blog/2017-generic-drug-access-and-savings-us-report. You can put this extra money on other important things in the household. Wondering if the generic medications are effective? The medications are usually taken through rigorous testing before the pharmaceutical companies are authorized to finally sell them to the consumers. Also, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration inspects generic medication to ensure the rules and regulations are properly followed by the drugs’ manufacturers. Generic medications cost much less than their brand-name counterparts. Wondering why? It is because the drugs’ manufacturers incur fewer costs when bringing the medicines in the market since they don’t have to conduct any clinical trials that demonstrate the level of their products’ safety.
Take Advantage of the Quantity Discounts. Why don’t you go for a 90-day supply of drugs instead of one that only lasts for a month? When you switch to long-term medication, you reduce the number of prescriptions. This in turn brings down the processing costs for the insurance companies. You will then pay twice the amount you pay in a month for the 3-month prescription. Isn’t this a good thing? Read more at https://healthplans.providence.org/fittogether/find-your-fit/manage-health-conditions/say-ok-to-90-day/.
Consider Using Mail-Order Prescription Services. This is one great way of cutting your prescription costs. Health insurers use the mail order services to fill prescriptions for medications meant for seniors in their insurance plans. This allows the seniors to pay less for prescription medication.