The projections — from Avalere Health, which tracks healthcare trends — are a critical reminder that Medicare’s private plans can change their costs and benefits every year to reflect rising costs of medical care, driven in part by healthcare reform changes under Obamacare. Happy With Medicare? Take the Medicare National Survey Here.
Buy generic whenever possible. Brand-name drugs drive costs up, which makes generic drugs a money-saving alternative. But be sure to check with your doctor about the use of generics. Compare pharmacies, use mail order. Shopping around for plans and drug costs can lead to a lower co-pay if you use an in-network pharmacy. Purchasing prescriptions by mail, or in three-month supplies, can also save you money.
Investigate drug assistance programs. Look into drug assistance programs that provide free or low-cost drugs to those who meet income-eligibility guidelines. The RXAssist program — at rxassist.org/ — provides a clearinghouse of such programs.