According to the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, drug sales are climbing at a rate of 11% a year. And the number of prescriptions written are shooting up too.
Here's our first bit of advice in the prescription game: If available, doctor's samples are a way to get what you need without spending any money.
If you're not getting discounts on your prescriptions, no matter how old you are, do more digging for information.
Check your drug's manufacturer, ten or more companies have joined forces to give discounts through the Together Rx Access Card. It's for people without Medicare, insurance, and those under age 65. Couples for example can bring home $40,000 a year and still qualify.
Fox 19 called three of the big chain pharmacies and asked about the cash price for a 30 day supply of three popular drugs. Wal-Mart was the cheapest across the board. But prices can vary any given week at any given store, so shop around.
Use the internet or get someone you know to do it for you. Consumer Reports has a best buy drug site. The savings they found on generic drugs treating cholesterol and arthritis: $180 a month!
And finally, some secrets:
If you take 20 milligram pills, sometimes it's cheaper to buy 40 milligrams and cut them in half.
Make sure there's not an over the counter equivalent.
Don't forget about samples, but doctor's ask you not take advantage of them.
Drugs that don't get a lot of press are often cheaper.
And contact your drug manufacturer directly, many will knock some off the price if you get your doctor to go to bat for you and help you prove a need.
Here are some helpful links;