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Save Money with Dr. Oz's Free Prescription Medicine Program Advice

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Dr. Oz's prescription drug saving plan

Are you skipping on taking some medications because they are just too expensive? Discover now how that you can save money (up to thousands of dollars) on free and discounted prescription meds with this free prescription medicine advice from The Dr. Oz Show.

Contrary to what many believe, you do not have to be indigent to qualify for free medical exams and free medications explains Dr. Oz and his special guests.

“I am going to show you how you can get almost anything you need to keep you healthy - for free,” says Dr. Oz as introduces a new episode that keeps your body and bank account healthy.

Free Health Screening

“You don’t have to pay for screenings if you do it intelligently “ says Dr. Oz as he introduces consumer expert Elisabeth Leamy who tells viewers that some things in life are free when it comes to taking care of your health.

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Elisabeth Leamy is the Consumer Correspondent for ABC News' "Good Morning America" and is well-known for her expertise and sage advice on how to save money― particularly on how to find unclaimed money that is out there waiting for you. She is credited as an expert whose stories matter to people and their pocketbooks.

“You can get more than $100 worth of health screening for free--and we are talking about the key things that really let you know how you’re doing--like cholesterol, blood pressure, weight, body mass index…some even offer free glucose readings to let you know if you are developing diabetes. It’s pretty amazing,” says Ms. Leamy.

Dr. Oz points out the significance of this is that these tests are ones that are basic to any medical exam. For example, when a patient steps into a doctor’s office for a physical or for some health problem a patient is evaluated by these same checkups pointed out by Ms. Leamy that can be had for free outside of the doctor’s office by a health professional—typically a nurse volunteering her time.

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Ms. Leamy’s advice to viewers who are seeking free health exams for the aforementioned conditions is that many of these services are provided for free at local pharmacies, drug store chains, big box stores and county fairs. The trick is to get on their e-mail alerts that will notify you when they will be providing their free checkups, which are typically held on a weekend and/or during some promotional event such as National Diabetes Week.

Free Prescription Meds

“If your meds are blowing your budget, I’ve got the solution to give you free prescriptions,” says Dr. Oz as brings on stage a team of pharmacists who are here to tell viewers that when you are in-the-know and meet a few eligibility requirements, that you can get free prescription medications and save thousands of dollars. And even if you don’t quite make the eligibility requirements, you may qualify for some significant discounts to take the bite out of your medical bills.

Ms. Leamy tells viewers onstage and online that pharmaceutical companies actually give away more than $200 million worth of free prescription medications each year and that you need to learn how to take advantage of these programs for you and your family’s health. These programs are meant to help people who are too young to qualify for Medicare and have too high of an income to qualify for Medicaid.

Ms. Leamy explains that free meds are available through multiple programs that go under names such as:

• “Prescription Assistance Program”
• “Indigent Drug Program”
• “Charitable Drug Program”
• “Medication Assistance Program”

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And while the programs vary in their requirements, they will usually be approved if:

• You’re single and make between $25,000 and $45,000 a year.
• You’re a couple making between $35,000 and $60,000.
• You’re a family of four making $55,000 to $90,000.

Ms. Leamy cautions people that there are scammers out there who charge money for help in accessing these programs—usually by providing a fee for forms that you can easily get yourself for free. Her advice on The Dr. Oz Show website is to “Never pay to apply.”

To help the public find out where to apply for free prescription medications, the following list of clearinghouse websites are legitimate organizations that can connect you with hundreds of individual drug companies and programs:

• Needy Meds: This nonprofit was started by a social worker and doctor to help people find these programs. www.needymeds.org

• Partnership for Prescription Assistance: Run by PhRMA, the largest drug industry trade group. www.pparx.org

• RX Assist: Founded by Volunteers in Health Care, which is affiliated with Brown University. www.rxassist.org

The application process will typically ask you to fill out a form providing personal and financial information about yourself as well as some supporting documentation. Example info includes:

• Your meds: A list of the name brand prescription medications you and your family take.

• Your family: The number of people in your family and their ages. Proof of their citizenship status.

• Your income: Some companies ask for proof such as a W2 form and may also ask about assets.

• Your coverage: You may be asked for paperwork showing you have no prescription drug coverage or that the medication you need is not covered.

• Your prescription: Once you have completed the paperwork, you will print the form and have your doctor sign it to authorize the prescription.

If you meet the program’s requirements, it typically takes about ten business days to get approved after which you will either receive your medications by mail or at your local pharmacy.

As an example of how quick and easy finding free meds can be, Ms. Leamy did a timed demonstration for one family of four and by taking down all the meds they take and entering this and their family financial info into a clearinghouse program. In just a little over 5 minutes, she was able to save the family nearly $40,000 of out of pocket costs for their meds which included one common asthma inhaler PROVENTIL® HFA (albuterol sulfate) Inhalation Aerosol.

“Here’s the big take-away, no matter what medication you take there is a drug company that offers some sort of prescription assistance program―they all do! And if you don’t qualify for the free meds, you might very well quality for another program which is “Deep Discounts on Meds,” says Ms. Leamy who adds that in spite of the bad names pharma companies are called, many give back to the public by offering millions of dollars’ worth of meds for those who cannot afford them.

Image Source: Courtesy of PhotoBucket

References: The Dr. Oz Show