How can I cover my medical care expenses?

3 answers | Last updated: May 27, 2015
David hunter hamilton,oh asked...

Doughtnut hole coverage costs approximately $5000.00 last year and we do not have it again this year to spend on drugs. I continue working 40 hours a week but only net under $300.00. Is there any insurance or program to solve this problem?


Expert Answers

Most Medicare Part D drug plans don't cover any drug costs during the program's "doughnut hole" -- when total drug expenses for the year reach $2,510 but out-of-pocket costs for the year haven't yet reached $4,050. But there are some ways to save money on out-of-pocket prescription drug costs.

One thing you can do is switch from brand-name drugs to generic equivalents. If a generic is available, it usually costs far less. Check with your pharmacist to see what generics are available and how much you would save. There might also be a different drug that has the same effects as the drug you're taking but is significantly cheaper. Ask your doctor whether another company sells a nearly identical drug under a different name.

You can ask your doctor about free samples of the drugs you take. Pharmaceutical companies constantly give doctors loads of free samples. Doctors usually give a free drug sample to a patient who only needs one dose. But you can ask if your doctor is willing to give you more than one sample.

You can also see whether your state or local community has a program to help pay for prescription drugs. Often such programs limit their help to low-income, low-asset seniors. To qualify, you'd need to provide evidence of your financial situation.

If you're a veteran, see about free or low-cost drugs from a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) pharmacy. However, a VA doctor must prescribe these drugs. A veteran enrolled in Medicare is entitled to coverage for medical service from either the VA or Medicare but not both. So if you normally receive your drug prescriptions from a non-VA doctor, you would have to see a VA doctor to get the same prescription and have a VA pharmacy fill it at low or no cost. To find out more about VA benefits, you can visit the Department of Veterans Affairs website . You can also call the general benefits phone service at 800-827-1000 or the health benefits service at 877-222-

Some pharmaceutical companies have programs that provide certain medications at reduced costs for low-income seniors. You need to register directly with the pharmaceutical company's program. Your doctor might also have to fill out papers for the program. Also, many large pharmacy chains set up programs to provide discounted prescription drugs for people with Medicare. Some nonprofit organizations have programs to help members get discounted prescription drugs. These are often connected to a particular professional, union, or fraternal group.

To find out about these various programs near you, go to the Medicare website and click on the link called " Lower Your Costs During the Coverage Gap ." It will direct you to several other links with information about state and local government and pharmaceutical company discount programs. You can get the same information by calling Medicare toll-free at 800-634-2273. Free information on discount drugs is also available from the federal government's Area Agency on Aging which you can contact through the Area Agency on Aging website or call 800-677-1116. Some online clearinghouses for drug discount information can also direct you and your parent to pharmaceutical company, retail, and other drug assistance programs. Among them are Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America , the Medicine Program , and Volunteers in Health Care .


Community Answers

Tim answered...
There's an article on Caring.com that might help you: https://www.caring.com/articles/prescriptions-without-medicare

Dr. taffy answered...

Here's a free prescription discount card for medications that will help you save money. All you have to do is download it and take it in to your local pharmacy. It is already pre-activated. http://www.americasdrugcard.org/ew

Hope that helps.