Consumer Tips for Controlling Drug Costs - 16.09.2011

Consumer tips for controlling Drug Costs

Better use of prescription drugs begins with consumer education. Here are some tips related to medication that you can share with your plan members.

With the Doctor or Pharmacist

  • Don’t expect a prescription with every visit to your doctor.
  • Have a list of questions prepared for the doctor.
  • Be sure to inform the doctor of all medication, non-prescription drugs and herbal remedies you are taking. Also mention any allergies or reactions experienced in the past.
  • When you receive a prescription be sure to understand what it is, why and how it is taken and what the side-effects might be. If you are unclear about something, ask the doctor or pharmacist to explain again. Request written material on the subject that you can read at home.

At Home

  • Take the medication exactly as directed.
  • If a dose is forgotten, don’t double the dose. Contact the doctor or pharmacist to ask what should be done.
  • Don’t share medications.
  • Finish all of the medication as prescribed unless told otherwise.
  • Don’t save a prescription for future use unless told otherwise.
  • Be sure to ask if alcohol can be consumed with the prescribed medication.
  • Check expiry dates. Return outdated medication to the pharmacist.
  • Watch for side-effects and contact the doctor if they are severe.
  • Keep medication in a dry dark place.
  • Do not store medication in the bathroom. The heat and moisture could affect it.
  • Store medication in its original container.
  • Ask the pharmacist if there are any special storage requirements.
  • Store all medication out of reach of children.

By following these simple guidelines, your plan members will be helping to control the cost of prescription drugs and improve overall patient health.