Good News: EpiPens Are Getting Cheaper

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Jan 17 2017 - 7:51am

If you remember last summer they raised the cost of EpiPens, now they've thankfully lowered them!

epipen, asthma, allergy

The generic version of the EpiPen is now available in pharmacies. The company that had been increasing their price for their branded EpiPens had been charging over $600, but now CVS is offering the generic for just over $100!

This might not be a case of companies trying to undercut each other, and more like the original EpiPen maker trying to take advantage of the need for a life-saving allergy medication. It turns out it only costs $30 to make one EpiPen, so why would they charge over $600?

The drama over EpiPens has caused many legislators to review healthcare costs and spotlight concerns about overpriced pharmaceuticals. Even president-elect Trump has gotten involved and caused pharma stock prices to drop after making strong statements about lowering medication costs.

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If you're struggling with medication costs, there are ways you can lower your medication expenditures:

Apply for help. Welfare isn't the only way to get aid for your medications. Pharmaceutical companies themselves offer discounts and special programs to help those who qualify. There are also state pharmaceutical assistant programs you can apply for – as does social security. If you can't get help from any of these sources, then you can try national charity foundations that offer help for pharmaceutical expenses, like the National Patient Advocate Foundation. Disease-specific foundations will bring you better chances for aid, like cancer charities or diabetes charities for example.

Ask your doctor to switch you to generics. If you're not already doing so, switch to a generic brand for your meds. Generics are, for the most part, the same medications as their branded counterparts. They're cheaper, but only in some few cases their quality might also be lower. Ask your doctor whether switching to generics is fine for your kinds of medications. For example, Modvigil is the generic for modafinil and is a third of its price, but carries the same anti-narcoleptic action.

Try natural alternatives. There's a holistic natural remedy for almost any ailment. If you are a little overweight, you can (and should) try eating a vegetable-rich diet with lower carb intake and boosting your exercise level instead of taking your prescribed weight loss pills. If you have acne, you can try applying tea tree oil to your skin instead of using harmful and expensive prescription acne creams and pills. Before switching to a natural alternative, always ask your doctor if it's okay.

Now that the government is taking a look at pharmaceutical costs, you might enjoy a decrease in your medications expenses within the next few months. Until then, try these useful ways to lower your meds costs.

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