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Unread 08-15-2010, 11:39 PM   #1
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Default $5 prescription now costs $100

I went to get my prescription for Bupropion filled today and the charge was $100. Previously it was $5. I don't have insurance to cover prescriptions right now whereas previously I did, but still, this is a medication that has been in generics for many years. Why does a generic medication cost $100? This was at my local drugstore, a regional chain with a presence in 2-3 states. Does anyone know of a store to go to for generic prescriptions that doesn't charge so much? Would Wal-mart be an option? I think I've heard that Walmart only charges $3-4 for generic prescriptions. Is that only for people with insurance? Or would I get that low rate too? There is a Wal-Mart about 40 miles away, but it would be worth the drive if I could save $96.

I had to turn down my Bupropion prescription at the pharmacist because I cannot pay $100 right now. Plus, the amount just seemed obscene. I can understand a brand new, latest and greatest drug costing somewhat more. But a plain Jane generic that's been around for years? The pharmacy clerk seemed kind of pissed off at me too. I guess she now has to trouble to put the pills back.

I have to get my blood pressure medication filled next. It is also a generic. I have an appointment with my PCP tomorrow. One of the reasons is for a blood pressure check. I'll tell her I may have to stop the BP med due to finances, if it costs a $100 too.
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Unread 08-16-2010, 12:56 AM   #2
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

Before you drive the 40miles to Wal-Mart, call and ask if your RX is on their $4 list. Unless you are planning on going there anyway.

I know that Cymbalta is very expensive, and since I couldn't afford it, my pdoc gave me samples. Now that I have medicaid, I pay $2-$4 for it. My pdoc has to write on the script that I have to have that specific of a dose because insurance doesn't like paying that much for the script. (I take 120mg every day.) Never be afraid to ask for samples, especially if you are financial needy for a certain amount of time. I hope you are able to stay on your meds or find a more cheaper version.
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Unread 08-16-2010, 04:37 AM   #3
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

Regular wellbutrin xr runs 350 ish a month without insurance, so 100 for generic doesn't seem out of the ordinary. Generic doesn't necessarily mean it will be on the cheap 4 dollar list at WalMart, but certainly call ahead and find out.
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Unread 08-16-2010, 08:22 AM   #4
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Wink Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

The Walgreens chain also has a cut price offer. If you pay them $25 a year, you get serious reductions in your scrip prices, particularly on generics. Also, if you know of a brand name version of your drug, you can search the net for the maker's website and when you find it explore it to determine whether they have a free or discount drug program for people with low incomes. Take care!
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Unread 08-16-2010, 09:48 AM   #5
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

I checked the Wal-Mart $4 list online, and they do not cover Bupropion. Ygrec, thanks for the Walgreen's suggestion. There is one of those very close to me and they do cover Bupropion at a reduced rate: $9 for a 30 day supply of 75 mg plus a $35 joining fee. That is not the dose or the formulation I take, but I could make do, I guess. I think I'll sit tight for now and see what my PNP says when I see her in a couple of weeks.

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Originally Posted by Farmergirl
Regular wellbutrin xr runs 350 ish a month without insurance, so 100 for generic doesn't seem out of the ordinary.
I'm surprised, Farmergirl. I thought generic would mean inexpensive (because of the many companies that can now make the drug) not $100. Learn something new everyday. I think you also might be referring to the XL version, and I take the SR, which I know is cheaper. The XL is indeed very pricey.

Hmmm, I just checked the Costco site and they charge $62 for 100 tablets of the Bupropion SR that I need. I only take 1 a day so that is a 3 month supply. $20 a month is seeming a lot more reasonable than $100. I am thinking that my pharmacy is perhaps way overpriced? Perhaps they specifically don't want scumbags like me without insurance using their store. I get the message.
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Unread 08-16-2010, 11:21 AM   #6
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

I would check a good online pharmacy? http://www.aclepsa.com/bupropion-(zyban)

I don't think just being generic means it's cheap, depends on the ingredients and how difficult it is to make/distribute, just means they don't really have to do any marketing or spend people going to doctor's to get them to prescribe, etc.
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Unread 08-16-2010, 07:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

I got my blood pressure medication filled at Pharmacy #2 today. They sold me a 3 month supply for $10. Pretty dang good! I think I am learning that all pharmacies are not created equal. I should try them for the bupropion.
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Unread 08-16-2010, 10:36 PM   #8
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

You can go to www.nulegacyrxcard.com for a free prescription card that enables you to get your medications at a reduced rate. Also, on the website that have participating pharmacy locator and pricing for the medications. This way you don't have any surprises when you go to the pharmacy. Grogers, also, has a reduced prescription list like Walmart. I understand about paying for medications and I have told the pharmist I couldn't afford the cost of prescription. Thankfully, he calls the doctor and see what kind of substitution we can do that I can afford.
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Unread 08-17-2010, 01:18 AM   #9
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

Generic just means that the patent for the chemical compound has run out so that other makers besides the company that first made the drug can make it and sell it. This does usually bring the prices down some, but not necessarily down to the $4 prescriptions. Over time the cost often drops as more companies start making the generic. The really cheap ones are usually ones that have been around for a long time.
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Unread 08-17-2010, 03:53 AM   #10
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Default Re: $5 prescription now costs $100

I had a similar experience with generic ambien a 2(?) yrs ago. One place I paid like $10 whereas another wanted to charge me $75! I found pharmacies were very accomodating when I called ahead to compare prices. (I also found Costco to have the best price.)

I also take bupropion and I'm sure I don't pay nearly that much (although I can't remember how much I DO pay--sorry!)

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