Frugal Living Tips: Prescription Medication On A Budget

Maybe it’s because I’m a nurse (no really, I am. Okay, you can stop laughing now), but I tend to believe most people are on prescription medications. And, as any good nurse (stop laughing) knows, prescription medications are important – very important, in most cases, for those who need them.

The problems with prescription drugs are numerous and not something I’m overly invested in getting into, so as a deals blog, I will instead write about how to AFFORD your prescriptions when you’re livin’ on a budget.

prescription drugs on a budget

Prescription Medication On A Budget Don’ts:

Do NOT buy your prescriptions online UNLESS it’s a reputable company that has been recommended to you by a doctor or pharmacist. Buying from Canada or Mexico may be good, but counterfeiting drugs has become Big Business and the very last thing you want is to find out you’re taking something that is potentially dangerous.

Do NOT use a website to purchase your prescription drugs that does not require a valid prescription. Only your doctor should be prescribing medication for you, NOT the Internet.

Avoid ANY websites that don’t carefully list their address and phone number. If the phone number and address is not in the US (and you’re in the US, natch), you should purchase your online prescription drugs from US based pharmacies. Your insurance provider should know more about this.

How To Save Money (Properly) On Prescription Medications:

If your doctor has prescribed you a name-brand medication, ask if there is a generic form of your prescription medication. Sometimes, the generic forms of prescription drugs do not have the same level of efficacy, so be certain to discuss the prescription with your doctor.

If the name-brand of the medication is all that’s available, ask your doctor for some medication samples. Drug companies often provide doctors with loads of free samples that, if expired, get tossed out. Don’t be afraid to speak up and say that you do, in fact, need some financial assistance with your prescription medication.

Visit the website of the makers of your prescription medication to see what sort of assistance they can offer. Often, you can find coupons for the medications on their websites (especially if you’re using a name-brand medication).

Talk to your doctor and insurance company about mail-in pharmacy rates for prescriptions that you have been stabilized on for many months (or years). If the dosage has remained the same for a number of months, it’s safe to order a 90-day supply. Check with your insurance company first to see what pharmacy they’d like you to use for a 90-day supply, then have your doctor write the prescription for 90-day supply. HOWEVER, if it is a new prescription medication, wait to see if the prescription is effective for you before ordering medication in bulk.

If your prescription insurance is sub par, check into AAA, Walmart, and other places that have deals to assist people in finding their name-brand drugs at a discount. If you don’t know where to start, ask your doctor who should know some tips and tricks for you.

Unrelated, I tried this? (below) and it’s actually totally awesome. Especially if you’re new to budgeting (like me)

prescription medication on a budget


Any other tips and tricks for buying prescription medication while on a budget?

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6 thoughts on “Frugal Living Tips: Prescription Medication On A Budget

  1. When choosing healthcare options, go with an HMO. They typically have lower co-pays and tend to only include lower cost medications in their prescription formulary.

    Oh and certain chronic illnesses have charitable organizations (i.e. Leukemia & Lymphoma Society) that will help with the costs of prescriptions. So look for financial assistance on their websites.

  2. We are completely uninsured. We use Sam’s Club pharmacy, because with our business plus membership we get more discounts. The price differences are unbelievable on almost every nrand name drug out there, and our $4 generics are usually $3.something. also, I totally remind the doctor that i am uninsured and MUST HAVE $4 generics or I will NOT be getting the scrip filled.

  3. I would also suggest calling around to different pharmacies to check their prices. I found an $80.00 price difference in an antibiotic from a local ‘mom and pop’ pharmacy at $40 to a local chain/discount store at $120. That was plain old augmentin nothing too fancy. So even if it is not a regular daily med, you should always compare prices.

  4. If you are going to use an internet pharmacy, check out

    This site allows you to enter the URL of an internet pharmacy and confirm whether or not it has been verified as part of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy’s (NABP’s) Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites (VIPPS) program.

    Internet pharmacies can be scary places, so do your homework to be sure you’re getting the product you expect.

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