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Category:  Health
Related Links | Healthy Living | Stress | Emotional Well-being | Cutting Medical Costs |

Using Generic Drugs to Save Money

By Nikki Willhite

www.allthingsfrugal.com

Most people are aware that you can save money buying a generic drug rather than the original brand name. Once a drug has been on the market a certain number of years, it's patent runs out which leaves the door open for other pharmaceutical companies to copy it.

Sometimes the producers of the original drug will alter it slightly so as to extend their patent, but they are not always able to do that.  Recently I've seen some television commercials where two medications that have gone generic have been combined to make a *new* medication.  You can count on that costing more money!

In most cases, the generic drug works as well as the original. However, this is not always the case. Be sure that you ask your doctor. No sense paying for a drug that isn't going to do what you want it to do.

Unfortunately, sometimes you have to buy the generic, whether you want to or not, depending on your medical insurance.  Once a drug has a generic, your insurance carrier will insist that you purchase it instead of the original drug.

Be sure and ask for samples, if possible,  before filling your prescription. Most doctors have them. It usually doesn't take long to determine if a medication is going to cause you side effects you cannot tolerate. If you possibly can, wait and see.

To lower your blood pressure when paying for your medications, remember this. Out of 10,000-15,000 chemical compounds formulated and tested each year by the pharmaceutical companies, only ONE makes it to market. That's a lot of expense in research and development to come up with these medications, which we need.


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