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Should I use a Discount Drug Card?

Today’s featured video answers a Frequently Asked Question:  Should I use a Discount Drug Card?  Please watch the video at healthcarenavigation.com/videos.

Discount Drug Cards have become increasingly popular and commonplace.  You may have seen advertisements for them.  Discount Drug Cards are issued by private companies either for a specific medication or for general use for almost any medication.  Their purpose is to give consumers a discount off the “cash price” of medications at the pharmacy.

Discount Drug Cards are not insurance (even if you pay a fee to enroll in one).  Discount Drug Cards also cannot be used in conjunction with insurance.  It is an either-or proposition.  For those without insurance, the use of a Discount Drug Card will save you money.  Additionally, if your prescription is not covered by your health plan, using a Discount Drug Card should save you money at the pharmacy.

For those with coverage with low or no deductibles for medications, the use of a Discount Drug Card is likely not a consideration since out-of-pocket medication costs should be modest.

Other than the uninsured, those who are likely to be most interested in a Discount Drug Card are those with a high deductible health plan.  Even with an insurance discount, some drugs can cost several hundred dollars while in your deductible.  What if picking up your medication with a Discount Drug Card (instead of using your insurance) could save you $100?  Should you do that?

The answer depends on how frequently you will refill this and other medications, whether there are other services you might use that will help reach your deductible and how high your deductible is.  As stated above, Discount Drug Cards cannot be used with insurance and no amount you spend on medications when using a Discount Drug Card will be applied to your deductible or out-of-pocket maximum (Please watch the videos “The Deductible” and “The Out-of-Pocket Maximum” if you are confused about these terms).  As a result, you need to consider:  How often do I plan to fill this medication?  Will I pay more with my insurance for a couple of months before reaching my deductible and thereafter pay a much lower cost than if I used the Discount Card?   These issues should be considered when opting to use a Discount Card over your insurance.  Because there is often uncertainty associated with these considerations, however, you need to decide the course with which you are most comfortable.

If you decide to use a Discount Drug Card, make sure to obtain one from a reputable company.  Many reputable programs are available for free online; others request a modest fee.   Be suspicious of any site that asks for sensitive, confidential information.

Please let us know if there is an FAQ you would like addressed in a future video.  Thanks for watching!