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The Rising Cost of Prescription Drugs

Posted on August 7, 2023 by Nicholas Juarez

If you're like many Americans, the rising cost of prescription medications could be costing you your wellbeing. Specifically, seniors living on a set income without insurance have found it difficult to cover necessary prescriptions out-of-pocket, and for that reason, may be failing woefully to have the treatment they have to remain healthy. Often, the struggle can put a large strain on seniors' finances.

But why are prescription drug prices so high, particularly when a lot of people who require medication are often not in a budget which allows them to cover the full price? The true reasons tend to be more complicated than everything you might suspect, but one thing's for several - drug prices have already been skyrocketing.

The reason that's frequently touted (by the drug companies, needless to say) for the high price of drugs is research and development (R&D) costs. The drug companies contest that the only path to cover the development of new life-saving drugs - that may enhance the lives of an incredible number of Americans - is through profits from current drug sales. The high prices, they state, are simply just a reflection of the spending that's essential for the creation of newer, better drugs.

But is this the reality? Are drug companies utilizing a large percentage of current prescription drug sales to invest in R&D? If that's the case, will be the new drugs under development truly likely to enhance the health of individuals who need them most? Sadly, this won't seem to be the case.

In reality, drug companies save money on advertising, lobbying and political contributions than they do on research and development. The majority of the money you purchase prescription medication results in the pockets of marketers and politicians, to enable you to be convinced that you'll require the "newer" and "better" drugs which are under development.

In addition, research and development will concentrate on more "marketable" forms of drugs that the drug companies can sell to the biggest levels of people. Just how many times perhaps you have seen advertisements for a drug which will help alleviate such serious medical ailments as social panic and seasonal allergies? Unfortunately, which means that most large drug companies have a tendency to neglect the development of life-saving drugs for much more serious conditions, because the numbers aren't there to rake in high profits.

Developing new allergy or anxiety drugs, however, will not require massive levels of money, as these drugs have been completely developed. Neither does rehashing previously developed drugs to be marketed for a fresh ailment. Usually the newer drugs under "development" aren't new at all. So even the amount of money that is allocated to R&D, it could be argued, can be an unnecessary expense driven by the marketplace a lot more than by the country's medical needs.

Unfortunately for the buyer, all the investment property on advertising instead of development, and providing drug information to physicians about specific new drugs that require to be marketed, helps it be very likely that you'll find yourself paying more income than you need to. Also, because your physician is only given information on the most recent and "greatest" drugs, he/she could be more more likely to prescribe you the more costly drugs. Perhaps surprisingly, you can find older versions of drugs out there that work equally well as their updated counterparts (sometimes better) along with generic versions of brand drugs which come at a significantly lower cost. Needless to say, the drug companies usually do not market these drugs and do all they are able to to help keep generic drugs off the shelves so long as possible.

That's another place your cash goes once you buy prescription medications - lawyers. Drug companies spend big money spending money on court cases to increase the patents of certain drugs. Despite the fact that the cases tend to be lost ultimately, court processes may take months to solve - buying additional time for the drug companies to function as sole profiteers of a specific drug. Once the patent on a drug runs out, others are permitted to create and sell a generic version of the drug. It is almost always sold for a lesser price, which takes customers from the brand and reduces that drug company's profits. Ultimately, patents tend to be extended anyway as the drug company finds a fresh application for the drug, thus artificially extending the life span of the patent and keeping generics off the shelves. You wind up paying more just because a less costly generic alternative isn't available and you also are forced to pay out for the bigger priced brand drug instead.

For the lucky those who have insurance that covers the price of their drugs, this can be indirectly allowing the drug companies to charge a lot more than they might if everyone had to cover a high price. Because lots of people never start to see the true cost of these prescriptions, the purchase price isn't something they be worried about. Because of this, drug companies feel freer to improve prices and costs continue steadily to rise. Underneath line? A lot of what you purchase drugs is taken as profit.


Understanding why drug costs are so high, you might feel that it really is impossible to locate a solution to reduce them. But this simply isn't true. There are many actions you can take to make prescription medications less expensive.

As mentioned briefly above, it pays (literally) to be informed. If your physician doesn't contain the knowledge regarding all of the drug options avaiable for the condition, take initiative and conduct a few of your personal research. Ask your physician if you can find any older versions of the most recent drug you've been prescribed and discover if the drug is really as effective. If it could get the job done equally well as its newer relation, and includes a cheaper price, it will not take you long to produce a decision.

Secondly, learn if you can find any generic versions of the drug you will need available in your neighborhood. Generic drugs will be the same drug but minus the brand name price. This kind of drug is comparable to the no-name brands you discover in your neighborhood grocery store. The merchandise is exactly exactly the same but less costly because you are not spending money on the name (and therefore the advertising).

If you're uninsured or underinsured, be sure you exhaust all of your insurance options. Calculate the expenses connected with purchasing insurance and determine if you will find a plan which will ultimately weigh on your side. Also, learn when you can reap the benefits of Medicare. Medicare Part D is one option you need to research, although for most Americans it has actually made prescription medications more costly and appears to have been intended to benefit the drug companies as opposed to the American public. The procedure could be confusing, but in the event that you take time to find out in case you are among the lucky few to benefit, it may be worth your while.

Finally, many Americans have chosen to order discount drugs online, from either American or Canadian pharmacies. American online pharmacies offer older and generic versions of drugs at a lower life expectancy cost, while Canadian operations can in fact offer brand prescriptions (or whatever prescription you need) for a significantly cheap. This is due to the fact the Canadian Government regulates the expense of drugs, therefore you pay less at the money register. Provided that the pharmacy is licensed to conduct international pharmacy services, ordering online from the Canadian pharmacy is really a safe and affordable option to the high cost of drugs in the U.S.