Affordable Prescriptions – It’s Possible, OH MY!
By: Camila Cal, SeniorLivingGuide.com
It’s no secret that finding and purchasing affordable prescription medication that we all need to live our healthiest lives can be a difficult task. More often than not, the prices and stress surrounding this topic can get quite high! Luckily, Joe Ponds of Canadian Meds-Melbourne joined SeniorLivingGuide.com Podcast to enlighten seniors on their options when it comes to searching for affordable prescriptions.
Joe became passionate about affordable prescriptions when he became sick and had to stay at the hospital for some time. He was shocked at the hospital bill afterwards; fortunately, he was covered under the VA and had the resources to cover the costs, but this made him think: what do people who live paycheck to paycheck do when faced with such high costs of prescription medication?
His company, Canadian Meds-Melbourne, is a locally, American, and veteran-owned pharmacy service offering more affordable prescriptions that anyone from all over the nation can access. One of his goals is to help the senior community because he knows that as we age, the number of medications we may need to take can increase. Many people over the age of 75 years old can need 12-18 prescriptions, if not more.
So, why is the cost of prescriptions so high?
Joe says that after years of research, discussion, and thought, his opinion is that it’s because there’s no rule or law that tells companies that they can’t go above a certain amount. No sliding scale exists in the United States. Other countries do tell drug companies that they can only charge a certain amount for their first two years selling the drug, and after that they may set a fixed price. But in the U.S., there are no rules, and it shows when comparing drug prices around the world! Ponds explains that within the U.S., patents are extended more than in other countries, which also raises the cost of medication.
Because seniors are often on a fixed income, the strain of medication increasing in price year after year can become quite stressful, even going so far as leading some people to stop taking prescriptions in order to cut costs.
The good news is that there are options to save seniors money while also complying with legality and safety. The same medication that is available in the U.S. is also available in other countries, at a fraction of the cost. As it is, Joe explained that 80% of all active ingredients in most medications are imported, and only one in five of medications are produced here; everything else comes from other countries. As long as the customer is the end user, they are legally allowed to obtain medication from a third party without issue. Most of these online prescription companies function like a local pharmacy, meaning that customers would need a prescription from their doctor.
However, Joe emphasized that it is important to do your research! Don’t trust the first company that you find on the internet. First, pick up the phone and give them a call. Ensure that they have real people working for them and you can gauge how good their customer service is. Joe said it’s important to get a good vibe from the company, especially since you’d be purchasing life-saving medication from them. Find out what their physical location is; if there is no address listed, be wary. Anyone can create a website and you don’t want to find yourself on the other end of a scam. Along those same lines, don’t always go with the cheapest option. “If it’s too good to be true, it probably isn’t,” Joe said. You have to ensure that you are going to receive a legitimate medication and not something that may be dangerous to your health.
It’s also important to do your homework on where the companies are sourcing their medications from. If the company is purchasing medications from a country where inspectors cannot go, it’s not a good idea to trust them. Some countries do not have as many regulations as others, so it’s important to have inspectors monitoring for safety.
Most importantly, Joe wants seniors to know that there are affordable options available to them because we should all have options when it comes to our healthcare. “We should be advocates for ourselves and have voices when it comes to our own health,” he said.
For more senior and caregiver resource podcasts, visit SeniorLivingGuide.com Podcast or they can be found, listened and downloaded most anywhere you enjoy music or podcasts such as Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Podchaser, and more!Tags: Affordable Medications, Prescription Medications