WASHINGTON (DC News Now) – Prescription drug prices have risen more than the rate of inflation according to a recent federal report. While the Cut Inflation Act promises to impose penalties on certain drugs from pharmaceutical companies that raise prices more than inflation, consumers can turn to prescription alternatives to cut costs.
Consumers could potentially save hundreds of dollars through prescription discount programs from pharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer and Merck.
However, a recently launched pharmaceutical company run by Mark Cuban, an entrepreneur known on TV for “Shark Tank”, promises hundreds of drugs at dramatically reduced prices.
Although CostPlus does not accept insurance, generic versions of the medications on offer could save anywhere from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars.
For example, birth control drugs are priced between $20 and $120 less than the brand name alternatives listed. For dementia, CostPlus offers discounts between $75 and $350, as well as significantly lower prices for mental health drugs.
The current deals come after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a September report that said prices for more than 1,200 drugs rose by more than the 8.5% inflation rate between last July. and July of this year.
“The average price increase for these drugs was 31.6%. Some drugs in 2022 increased by more than $20,000 or 500%,” the report said.
In northeast DC today, I asked several people how much their needed prescriptions cost and used the cost plus as an example of cutting costs.
Several people spoke to DC News Now on Monday about the burden their families are facing due to the high prices of necessary medications. One woman said, “My mom spends at least $400 co-pay on her medications every month.”
One man said he spends about $365 a month on medication, including treatment for opioid addiction, but noted his Medicare coverage only goes so far to help his expenses.
Consumers should talk to healthcare professionals about the medications they take and can ask if there are more affordable alternatives and programs to offer lower costs.