Medication access Replies
Reply to the following 2 Discussion Posts
APA format with intext citation
Word count minimum of 150 words per post, not including references
References at least one high-level scholarly reference per post within the last 5 years in APA format.
DISCUSSION POST # 1Reply to Nozomi
The cost of prescription medications continues to rise in the United States, and cost-related medication underuse (CRMU) is a major healthcare issue (Miranda et al., 2019). CRMU refers to a situation in which patients take less medication than prescribed or skip doses altogether due to their inability to pay for those medications (Miranda et al., 2019). The prevalence of CRMU in people over the age 55 in the United States is estimated to be 16.8% in 2014, which is higher than other high-income countries (Miranda et al., 2019). Some of the risk factors for CRMU are multiple diagnoses, being under the age 65 years, lack of insurance prescription coverage, and low household income (Miranda et al., 2019). In order to ensure medication compliance and to improve patient outcomes, it is imperative that healthcare providers are aware of how to make medication more accessible to their patients.
Fiscella et al. (2019) suggest that the first step in preventing CRMU is through routinely asking patients if they have any difficulties in purchasing their medications. In addition, some methods to contain the out-of-pocket cost for the patient is to recommend the use of generic medications, and to routinely de-prescribe by discontinuing unnecessary medications (Miranda et al., 2019). Additionally, the provider may offer extended prescriptions, such as three-month supply, as well as manufacturer discounts and coupons, in order to reduce the cost burden to the patient (Fiscella et al., 2019). For example, Walmart offers $4 prescriptions for an array of prescription medications, including diabetes and thyroid medications (Fiscella et al., 2019). This information can be found at
https://www.walmart.com/cp/4-dollar-prescriptions/1078664. Other websites, such as goodrx.com, may offer significant discounts on prescription medications, which may also be helpful for many patients. If patients need additional assistance, there are free medication programs, such as needymeds.org and rxoutreach.org (Fiscella et al., 2019). Furthermore, certain federally funded community clinics have contracts that allow them to offer significantly discounted or free prescription drugs for low-income individuals (Fiscella et al., 2019).
The actual price that the patient needs to pay for a prescription drug is determined by the patient’s insurance company, rather than the manufacturer, distributor, or the pharmacy (Miranda et al., 2019). For the uninsured patients, as well as some branded drugs, the price depends on the pharmacy (Miranda et al., 2019). Thus, pharmacies are an important part of the care team, and it may be helpful for the provider to be aware of the local pharmacy options, and the cost of some common medications in those pharmacies. In some cases, it may be necessary for the office to check with the pharmacy regarding the availability and coverage of medications, if it is very difficult for the patient to do this independently.
DISCUSSION POST # 2 Reply to Sahra
Being able to get relatively inexpensive medications is a significant component of healthcare, and finding strategies to help people who do not have prescription coverage is beneficial to those in need. There are multiple low-cost approaches that can possibly be used to aid patients in obtaining the medications that they need to have.
One is that, whenever possible, advocating the use of generic medications can greatly lower expenditures. Generic medicines can frequently be less expensive than brand-name versions while being similarly effective (Tian et al., 2020). Many pharmaceutical firms provide patient assistance programs in which qualifying individuals can get free or low-cost prescriptions. These programs frequently have a specific requirement for being eligible, and clinic staff members can assist patients in applying for them (Kang et al., 2019). Clinics can utilize a sliding fee scale according to their patients’ income levels to modify the cost of medical services and prescriptions based on their capacity to pay. Some pharmacies give prescription drug discounts through savings clubs or memberships. These memberships frequently have a modest yearly charge and can result in significant savings. Healthcare practitioners can offer free pharmaceutical samples to patients, especially for short-term requirements, until a more economical long-term option can be identified. Clinics may consult their pharmaceutical formulary to verify that the prescriptions provided are cost-effective solutions for patients who do not have insurance (Kiessling et al., 2022).
When estimating the cost of prescriptions for patients in the clinic, healthcare staff may adopt several strategies to come up with a number. The staff may request information about the pricing of certain drugs by contacting nearby pharmacies. Pharmacies frequently have generic choices available and can give estimations based on the patient’s location. Numerous online resources and websites enable patients and healthcare practitioners to compare the pricing of medications at different pharmacies (Kiessling et al., 2022). These tools can assist in determining the least expensive alternative. They can investigate and give information about medication savings programs in the patient’s location. Some EHR systems connect with prescription price databases, allowing healthcare practitioners to see drug costs immediately in the patient’s electronic record. In fact, Phimarn et al. (2023) emphasized that developing a working connection with local pharmacies can help the clinic remain up to date on prescription pricing and any savings.