Why Some People Can’t Afford to Be Sick

With all the talk recently about health care reform, prescription costs, and the expense for those without insurance, some people are left feeling that they simply can’t afford to be sick. For this reason many people without coverage simply avoid the doctor and hope to get well soon. Minor things like colds or injuries are simply left to chance and go unattended because the fear of cost is much greater than the fear of poor health.

Rather than forego treatment for what could be come a serious condition, some other options apply to certain people. For example, those with below-average incomes can get help with medical costs through the Social Services in their hometown. A card is given to the individuals and their children to be used for medical expenses for a small co-payment. There is quite a lot of paperwork involved but the coverage will be effective almost immediately. Individuals must provide proof of residence, household expenses, children’s social security numbers and all monies coming into the home.

There are other programs for those with below-average incomes whereby they can receive diabetes testing supplies and medication. You’ll often hear of these programs during tv commercials or online. The supplies are usually delivered to your door after filling out the initial paperwork. And in many towns there is a free clinic where it’s possible to get prescriptions filled for free. Again, you normally have to be a low-income individual for these services to be provided at no cost. In addition, these clinics usually don’t accept appointments and instead, it’s necessary to stand in line, sometimes for hours, to see the physician.

Your regular doctor can help with the problem of the prescription costs, in some cases, simply by offering you samples of the medicine. Drug makers often leave samples of their products with the physician who can then delegate the free prescriptions to patients with no coverage. Ask your physician if he has samples available and ask that a notation be made on your chart that you do not have insurance. In many cases the attending physician will offer samples, knowing that you have no coverage.

Prescription plans are available through television ads, online and in newspaper advertisements. The plans are usually for any person without insurance, regardless of the household income. The recipient receives a prescription card which is presented to the pharmacist upon picking up the prescription. The prescription cost is then reduced by forty to sixty percent or more. A monthly fee is charged for the card but the fee is often under twenty dollars. For those who have several prescriptions every month, these cards can save hundreds of dollars in the course of a year. Card or no card, always ask the pharmacist if he has a generic form of the drug available, which can save even more.

Although some battles rage on to prevent Americans from purchasing medications from other countries, currently online customers can and do order these prescriptions at much lower costs. Standards are often different in other countries for the sale of medications and some of the lower standards can affect the way the drug behaves. For example, the expiration dates on the drugs can be much longer in other countries, weakening the drug’s ability to perform at high standards over time.

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