Prescription costs will continue to rise

There's a lot of talk out there about prescriptions - the increasing need and the decreasing ability to obtain them. There's also a lot of mumbling about possible new programs and the feds finally taking note of the folks who are unable to access their needed medications.

Did I say "mumbling"? Maybe it's just me. When I try to read through the proposed Medicare plan for prescriptions, mumbling just seems to come naturally. I'm reminded of the old commercial question "Where's the beef?" On the plus side, we should be thankful that the legislators are at least doing something about a deplorable situation; and we hope it has more to do with concern than the huge voting block seniors have become. OK, maybe a little too cynical. But, still ...

A recent Time magazine (well, in the last year, anyway) summarized the plan with an article titled "Six Questions About the New Medicare Bill," and while it's definitely a summary, it's still a bit boggling. We have a couple copies in the office and we periodically (no pun intended) review them. The long and short of it seems to be there will be gaps in coverage and a lot of participatory costs.

On the brighter side, there seems to have been an increase in others scurrying to offer discount services for prescriptions. Some of them are relatively well-known, such as the Physician Assistance Program and Canadian Prescriptions. Others are out there, but have not yet become general knowledge; and still others just seem ... odd. And here I would like to quote Tom Sutherland of the Ilwaco Pharmacy in a letter in last week's Observer: "People should know that at the current time there are no 'Medicare-approved' prescription discount cards." So beware, because unfortunately whenever there's a need, there are also people rushing in to take advantage of that need. Be sure to check things out before jumping into a discount program. Give us a call and request prescription assistance information. We have a variety of approaches, which may benefit you, and have worked with some of them long enough to know them to be reliable.

Also, another reminder: Many pharmaceutical companies that offer discounts when ordering directly from them, also have limitations as to any other prescription programs you may be on.

We'll look into some of these programs in more depth later, but for now remember: Prescription costs will continue to rise - but we'll continue to be here to help guide you through the information and assistance maze. We can help!

Senior Information & Assistance

Ilwaco: 642-3634/(888) 571-6558 Raymond: 942-2177/(888) 571-6557

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