** This article was published in the December 2016 INStride publication. Thanks to the Herald-Times and INStride for increasing awareness about local programs to help manage health care costs. To read the entire INStride publication, click here. **
You can save a lot of money using coupons. There are TV and YouTube shows about people who’ve turned coupon clipping into an art form. But, how often do you see a coupon for prescription medicines?
United Way of Monroe County is proud to partner with FamilyWize to offer a free card that can lower your prescription cost on thousands of medications. You can learn more and download YOUR free card at www.monroeunitedway.org/familywize.
Prescription costs can be a minor challenge for some people and a prohibitive expense for others. In the latest community SCAN report, about 25% had trouble paying for their prescriptions (at lower income levels, it was over 50%). Those who work in social service hear stories of people who try to save costs by taking half the dosage their doctor recommended or taking a day ‘off’. For a lot of meds, that can have dangerous consequences.
There are ways to keep prescription costs lower: insurance plans usually include Rx benefits. If you don’t qualify for insurance through your employer, check www.monroeunitedway.org/healthcare to learn more about various coverage options. For low- and moderate-income residents of Monroe and Owen counties who don’t qualify for any of those plans, or who are between plans, we are fortunate to have a wonderful Volunteers in Medicine clinic right here in Bloomington. Visit vimmonroecounty.org to learn more about this United Way member agency and determine if you are eligible for their services.
For many people, staying well means taking 1, 2, or a bunch of prescription medicines. Some you’ll only use for a week and some will be with you for the rest of your life. They come in all sorts of colors, shapes and sizes. But there’s one thing they have in common: they’re usually not cheap.
The FamilyWize Discount Prescription program is a community partnership that reduces the cost of medicine for families and individuals with or without prescription drug coverage through a partnership with 61,000 pharmacies nationwide. Anyone can use the FamilyWize card at a participating local pharmacy to get a discount on the price of FDA approved name-brand and generic prescriptions. Using a card to save doesn’t require enrollment or personal information.
FamilyWize can help lower the cost of prescription drugs during deductible or waiting periods before you are eligible for an insurance plan, and for medications not covered by your insurance plan. You can save an average of 30% off the pharmacy's usual and customary retail price of prescription drugs, with the highest savings on generic drugs.
The FamilyWize Prescription Savings Card is free and offers immediate savings at participating pharmacies. It functions like a reusable prescription discount coupon. There is no registration or membership process, age requirement, or income limit for eligibility. The card can be used by people who have no health insurance, by people with health insurance during deductible periods, and for prescription medicine not covered by health insurance, Medicare and other benefit plans. Of course, FamilyWize is not insurance, nor is it intended to replace insurance.
You can print your own copy of the card from www.monroeunitedway.org/familywize.
FamilyWize also provides a Drug Price Lookup Tool, an online resource to compare prescription medication prices and find local pharmacies with the lowest FamilyWize price. Consumers can access the easy-to-use tool on FamilyWize.org or through the FamilyWize app (available free at www.familywize.org/card?partner=card%2523DownloadApp).
The FamilyWize Prescription Savings Card is accepted at more than 61,000 pharmacies nationwide including many in Monroe, Owen, and Greene counties. See a list of participating pharmacies at www.monroeunitedway.org/fwpharmacies.
Over 70% of us use coupons to save money. But only 50% of people know about prescription savings cards. Be part of the smart half – visit www.monroeunitedway.org/familywize to learn more, download your card, and make the healthy choice the easy choice.
Working with our many partners in ACHIEVE, our 26 member agencies, local businesses, government officials... and you, United Way creates and sustains solutions so that everyone in our community has the educational support, economic mobility, and essentials to be successful. We want people to be sure people have the opportunity to learn more, earn more and lead safer and healthier lives. Please join us!
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Please consider donating to the United Way Essentials Priority Fund. This fund helps individuals and families meet basic needs with access to sufficient food, a stable place to live, low-cost health care, and the information and skills to manage crises.