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Prescription drugs continue to climb in price, hurting patients with and without health insurance

Posted at 5:28 AM, Jan 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-26 08:26:52-05

Twice a year, in January and July, we see a lot of prescription drug prices go up. According to the healthcare company, GoodRx, so far this month, more than 650 medications have seen price hikes, both for brand name and generic drugs.

The medication price increases are trending similarly to previous years. Last January, GoodRx reports more than 800 medications went up in price.

Click here to see a Hayat Pharmacist weigh in on drug price hikes in 2021. GoodRx reports the price hikes in 2022, on average, are anywhere from about five to ten percent.

"Unfortunately, there's no rhyme or reason as to why other than medications just continue to get more expensive," said Tori Marsh, Director of Research with GoodRx.

Click here to see if your medication has increased in price in 2022. Just a handful of the medications seeing a price jump are generic including Calcium Acetate, Paclitaxel, and Gentamicin.

Most, however, are brand-name drugs like Qnasl for allergies, Eliquis for preventing strokes, painkiller Oxycontin, and drugs for cancer patients like Camptosar and Ibrance. Some brand-name drugs have generic options, others don't.

"While few people are taking them, those who are are really getting hit with high price hikes," said Marsh.

"With insurance, January is the time when people are exposed to a lot because their deductible has reset. So, they really have no shielding form their insurance," she added.

To save, Marsh says first see if there's a generic option for your medication. She also encourages patients to shop around since drug costs can vary from pharmacy to pharmacy. Websites like GoodRx and Blink Health can help you find discounts.

You can also save by using a manufacturer's coupon if your prescription has one. Some drugmakers offer those. Another option to save is to see if you qualify for Patient Assistance Programs. If you're approved, it can help you get your medication for little or no cost at all.

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