When I signed up for health insurance coverage for my wife and myself I did a lot of research. It would have been simpler if we were covered under an employer plan but we are both self-employed so the available coverage plans are both limited and varied. If “both limited and varied” confuses you it is only indicative of what signing up for your own health insurance is. So again I say I did a lot of research and number crunching and came up with a plan. We are relatively healthy so the high deductible plans were appealing. I considered that what we were getting was a low-cost catastrophe insurance that insured, not our health, but the “just in case” scenario of a major medical event not bankrupting us. In short we pay for everything until we hit our deductible and then the insurance kicks in. That being decided we had one other choice: prescriptions or no prescriptions.
Having the prescription component added a significant cost to the already high cost of our “low” cost high deductible plan. Having little or no prescriptions that we were taking we opted for excluding the prescription component entirely. Before the ink was dry on the signature pages of our brand new health insurance there was a medical event that added more prescriptions to the mix. Now what? I walked into our local Pharmacy ready to pay for them all out-of-pocket. Before they even rang in the prescription they offered me a Prescription Savings Plan. Usually I just ignore these promotional tidbits but for some reason I listened. Once I did I was glad that I took the time because for $20 for an individual or $35 for a family, for the year, I was able to get a savings plan that gave us a deep discount on those prescriptions. In fact I was going to save more than $20 that day. I signed up and went on my way. The year went by and I used the plan over and over again.
Fast forward to last week when I went in to pick up the prescriptions again. They range me up for a 90 day and a 30 day refill on two different prescriptions. The total was $47.55. The total made me perk up and we realized that the Prescription Savings Plan had run out. A couple of keystrokes and an exchange of the $20 enrollment fee again and my total went down to $35 and change. With the enrollment fee taken out the prescriptions were only $15. Incidentally, saving me over $32 just on those two refills. Doing a little math I come up with $410.60 to pay for just those two prescriptions for the year without the plan. With the plan we are at $100 for those same two prescriptions. Saving $350 a year by paying $20 made a lot of sense.
Depending on what kind of plan you have for your medical and prescriptions it might make sense to do a little research and talk with your pharmacy. They may just have something that can make your hard decision a little easier. After all it never hurts to ask and listen. You may just be able to save a few of those hard-earned dollars.