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How a Discount Prescription Card Program Promotes Affordable Healthcare



If you don’t think it’s possible to save big money with a pharmacy discount card, just consider how programs, like those provided by Big Apple Rx, for example, have saved New Yorkers millions of dollars. Thanks to this discount prescription card, New York residents were able to save $1.5 million just in the first six months, between May and October 2011.

According to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, residents in Brooklyn have benefited especially from the program, with nearly $300,000 in savings for local residents in that short time frame. There are many reasons why this type of program works and why similar programs are spreading across the nation. Three of those reasons are explained here.

1.      It’s easy

Every program is different, but they all tend to be pretty simple to sign up for and take advantage of. Residents just have to follow a couple of simple steps to sign up for and participate in the program. The first step is either printing out the card from the program’s website, writing down the series of numbers associated with the savings (this works for those without a printer), or having the numbers texted to a mobile phone number. Then the series of numbers just need to be presented to the pharmacist along with ID, and the cardholder will instantly receive the savings as long as they’re shopping at a participating pharmacy.

2.      Many pharmacies participate

There are lots of stores that participate in these programs, so most cardholders don’t have to change anything about where and how they obtain their medications to take advantage of the savings. The aforementioned program, for instance, offers a pharmacy locator; NY residents can simply use it to quickly find out which pharmacies participate in the program. With so many providers participating in the program, cardholders are rarely inconvenienced in any way.

3.      It’s free

This might just be the biggest reason for the success of these programs. The New York program and most similar programs across the nation are free to join. Other than the cost for ink and paper to print out the discount card, there is really no cost incurred to the cardholder. Regardless of insurance status, age, gender, or income level cardholders can take advantage of discounts on all name-brand and generic medicines, and they can even save on some over-the-counter drugs. It really is just that simple.