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5 Essential Tips for Buying Prescription Drugs Online

prescription drugs online

Are you having trouble affording the high prices of pharmaceutical prescription drugs in America? You’re certainly not alone.

Prescription drugs in the U.S. can cost hundreds of dollars for just one bottle of medication. Some medications for certain conditions cost thousands.

Even when you pay high insurance premiums, you might not get your necessary prescriptions covered. Because they’re not on the insurance company’s formulary list.

So what do you do?

With the rise of the Internet, Americans are finding they can purchase life-saving prescription drugs online in countries like Canada that they can’t afford in the United States. But is it safe?

The answer is that depends.

In this article, you’ll learn five essential tips for ensuring the safety of purchasing prescription medication on the Internet.

Here are the five essential tips for buying prescription drugs online.

The Problem of Big Pharma in the U.S.

Although Congress has ignored drug reform for years, the public isn’t buying it. They’re angered and tired of paying high prices for medications that are available in other countries like Canada for so much less.

It’s no secret that the Big Pharma’s monopolies are increasing. They have priced both insured policyholders and the uninsured poor out of receiving important medicines.

Some companies that support Big Pharma would have you believe all online pharmacies outside of the U.S. are dangerous. But that’s essentially not true.

The Truth About Buying Prescription Drugs Online

The Internet presents both the opportunity to access much lower-cost medication. While some online companies are reputable, others, called rogue pharmacies, distribute counterfeit drugs and health scams.

These rogue pharmacies pretend like they are Canadian pharmacies, but they are from other countries with looser safety and health standards.

This is scary. But there are ways consumers can know if their drugs are safe.

Here is how to protect yourself when buying prescription drugs online.

1. The Website Should Be Verified By Pharmacy Checker

Pharmacy Checker is an organization launched in nearly 17 years ago to verify online pharmacy credentials. On the site, consumers can also do comparison checks of online pharmacies to locate affordable prescription medications.

The information on Pharmacy Checker is available at no cost to consumers around the globe. Browsers who visit the website can also take advantage of patient-assistant programs sponsored by pharmaceutical companies.

The site verifies online pharmacies for practice standards set by Pharmacy Checker. They use peer-reviewed research to design their rigorous standards.

Consumers are encouraged to only make purchases from verified and certified online pharmacies. This is one of them.

The Verification Program

Eligible online drug companies can apply to the PharmacyChecker Verification Program. If they are accepted, they may receive licensure.

Pharmacy Checker monitors the companies for compliance based on continued program standards.

Authorized websites receive the Pharmacy Checker seal to publish on their website.

This seal lets consumers know the drugs are dispensed from licensed online pharmacies that are in good standing in the countries where they are based.

2. Look for Online Pharmacies That Are NABP Compliant

Staying in-the-know about buying medication safely is critical to your health and wellness.

Although you may find medicines online that are priced low, it’s important to ensure the site where you are buying from is reputable. Before you make your purchase.

Another way of ensuring your medication are safe is to make sure they comply with the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) patient safety standards.

When the NABP reviewed nearly 12,000 pharmacy websites almost 95% of the pharmacies did not comply with pharmacy laws and practice standards set in place to protect public health.

Here’s a surprising stat from the NABP: 89% of online pharmacies the NABP reviewed didn’t even require a prescription to purchase a prescription drug. Obviously, they weren’t verified.

The NABP Pharmacy Program offers consumers ways to shop for prescription drugs online by identifying NABP-verified websites.

The organization believes this verification can provide confidence to consumers that they are buying from a trusted source.

3. Don’t Buy From a Pharmacy On the NABPs “Not Recommended List”

The NABP lists online pharmacies that fall out of compliance with NABP patient safety and practice standards as well as applicable law. The list is called the Not Recommended List (NRL).

Online pharmacy websites on this list engage in these illegal practices:

  • The online pharmacy does not hold the required licensure in its relevant jurisdictions
  • These pharmacies are unapproved or unauthorized for sale in the consumer’s jurisdiction
  • They sell drugs requiring a prescription by law without a valid prescription

Other online pharmacy websites on the NRL act as like brokers. They refer patients to other company websites that operate in violation of NABP applicable law, pharmacy practice standards, and patient safety.

4. Know The Risks: Purchasing Prescriptions from Unverified Websites

When you purchase prescription medication online, you run the risk of being targeted to crime and fraud.

Here are some of the risks:

  • Buying medication online with dangerous or even poisonous  fillers
  • Medication does not treat the medical condition promised to treat
  • Drugs may be laced with substances like fentanyl that can cause respiratory problems or even death
  • You may become a target of identity theft
  • You may expose your computer to malware and ransomware viruses

5. Beware of Online Drug Companies Advertising on Social Media

Many illegal online pharmacies try to fool consumers. They pretend to be located in Canada, a country that has stricter drug regulations. They do this to deceive people into believing they’re purchasing safe drugs.

These illegal companies may be located in countries with few regulation safeguards to protect consumers. And many of these companies promote their businesses on social media and some search engines.

But now search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing are getting smarter. They require drug advertisements to come from verified websites.

Now social media needs to catch up.

The Takeaway: 5 Essential Tips for Buying Prescription Drugs Online

Now you know five essential tips when considering buying prescription drugs online.

Make sure your purchases come from a site that’s been certified by PharmacyChecker or verified by the NABP so you can access prescription drugs that are as safe as they are affordable.

PricePro Pharmacy is a verified, Pharmacy Checker certified pharmacy. Browse our affordable medications available for purchase on our website.

Insurance and Pharmacy Coupons: What’s Covered, What’s Not?

use Pharmacy Coupons

Can RX coupons really help you save money on your prescription drug costs?

And will you be able to combine RX coupons with your US-based medical insurance to purchase your prescriptions and medication refills from an online Canadian pharmacy ?

If these questions have been on your mind, this resource will give you all the answers you need. We’ll cover:

  • Whether a Canadian pharmacy accepts US-based insurance
  • How to save money on prescriptions despite your coverage plan
  • The truth about how pharmacy coupons work
  • Tips to help you reduce your out-of-pocket expenses even more

Can You Use Your US-Based Insurance to Cover the Costs of Prescriptions in Canada?

While your doctor’s prescription is the same whether you’re filling it in the states or in Canada, the case is different when it comes to your insurance.

US-based and other international healthcare plans are not accepted in Canada, which means you are responsible for the total cost of your prescription at check out (unless you’re using our Flex RX plan).

However, you may be eligible for reimbursement depending on your insurance plan’s terms.

This is why we always include a detailed receipt with every order, which can then be submitted to your healthcare provider to see if they’ll pick up the difference.

To find out if your insurance plan covers medication reimbursement, you’ll need to contact your specific provider and discuss your plan’s fine print. Don’t get too discouraged if you find out your insurance plan won’t cover the costs of your prescriptions if you fill them in Canada.

Many prescription medications are drastically cheaper — in some cases up to 80% off — across the northern border.

And that means you may be able to save money on your prescriptions without your insurance company’s help.

How to Save Money on Prescriptions by Using a Canadian Pharmacy

As we talked about in this guide, the costs associated with prescriptions in the United States only continues to grow without any signs of stopping.

But that’s not the case in Canada.

Thanks to universal healthcare in Canada, prescriptions and other healthcare related expenses are kept at a reasonable and affordable rate.

And these reduced prices on prescriptions aren’t just for Canadian citizens either.

As a US citizen, you can purchase your prescription medications for your own use in Canada.

So while the same EpiPen may cost you over $600 in the US — and after insurance pays their portion — you’ll only pay around $100 using a Canadian pharmacy.

And this is just the out-of-pocket cost due at checkout.

If your insurance covers medication reimbursement, your cost could be even lower.

This is why so many Americans are turning to Canada drugs when it’s time to refill their prescriptions instead of using their local pharmacy in the neighborhood.

With online Canadian pharmacies, you’ll find the same name-brand medications and generic prescriptions you’ll find at home, just for up to 80% off.

Again, this huge cost difference is without using insurance.

Another option to offset your out-of-pocket expenses that may not be reimbursed by your insurance provider is to search for and use pharmacy coupons.

Save Even More Money With Pharmacy Coupons

If you’re a first-time buyer, you can take advantage of eligible RX coupons to help you lower the cost of your medications further.

This one-time discount is applied right at checkout once the coupon code is entered.

So if your first-time order meets the minimum requirement of $50.00, you can save even more money by using one of our coupons for our 17 top-selling medications.

Now if you do decide to use one of those RX coupons, you may be wondering:

Can You Pair Pharmacy Coupons with Your Insurance Coverage?

RX coupons are applied to your order at checkout.

Since Canadian pharmacies don’t accept US-based or international healthcare insurance plans, you cannot use your coverage to pay for any part of your prescription costs during the online purchase.

However, certain insurance companies may provide reimbursement for your medications when you order them from an online Canadian pharmacy.

Your pharmacy coupon will be instantly applied to your order at checkout to lower your total amount.

Once your prescription is paid for, you can then submit the total amount from your receipt to your insurance provider to see if they’ll cover it.

Since it comes off the total before your insurance pays (again, if they do), you can technically combine your pharmacy coupon with your insurance plan’s reimbursement to pay even less for prescriptions than you are now. In some cases, the coupon may also help you meet the reimbursement requirements so you can get complete coverage.

The RX coupons are applied to your order regardless of whether your insurance picks up all, part, or none of the tab.

Find a Canadian Pharmacy that Price Matches

Here at PricePro Pharmacy, we believe everyone has the right to access affordable prescription drugs.

And while our prices are usually the lowest out there, you may come across one that’s even more affordable.

If that’s the case, and the price quote adheres to the following standards, we’ll price match it to ensure you get the lowest possible rate without sacrificing on quality or safety.

To be eligible for a prescription price match:

  1. The pharmacy with the lower price must be accredited and licensed
  2. Shipping fees must also be included in the total price you’re quoted
  3. Competitor promotions and specials are excluded
  4. Price quotes must be provided and valid at the time you’ll be placing an order
  5. Competitor products must also be in stock
  6. They must also ship to the US

If your price meets that criteria, we’ll help you save even more money on your prescription medications.

And if you find that your out-of-pocket cost is still higher than you can afford right now, especially since you may be ordering a 3-month supply at once, you may be eligible to use our Flex RX Payment Plan.

Here’s How a Flex RX Payment Plan Works

We created our Flex RX plan to help spread out the costs of placing your refill orders for prescription medications.

Here’s how it works:

  • Half the cost of the medication, along with the flat rate shipping charge of $9.95 USD, is due upon ordering.
  • The other half of your payment is split over two monthly payments.
  • So your next payment, or the second one, is not due until 30 days after your initial purchase.
  • The third payment is due 60 days after your purchase.

Using that $100 EpiPen example again, here’s how your payment plan would break down if you ordered on March 1st:

RX-coupons-epipen

As you can see, the price of the EpiPen ($100) and the flat rate shipping charge ($9.95) equals $109.95.

However, if you choose our Flex RX plan, you’ll only need to pay half the cost of your prescription ($50) plus the shipping charge ($9.95) to total just $59.95 at the time of checkout.

To cover the outstanding balance of $50, you’ll have one payment of $25 due in 30 days and another payment of $25 due 30 days from that.

Plus, there are no interest or service charges with this flexible payment option so you won’t pay a penny more to use this service as long as you make on-time payments.

Late or missed payments are subject to a 17.9% compounded interest rate so it is important to keep your due dates in mind.

And remember not all medications are eligible for this payment option either.

To see if yours is eligible for a Flex RX plan, visit this page which lists all of the Canada drugs available to US citizens.

Once you click on your medication and add it to your cart, you’ll see the option to pay using a Flex RX program at checkout:

RX-coupon-flex

Click the box to see your payment terms and you’ll know exactly what’s due upon ordering, as well as over the next two billing cycles:

RX-coupon-billing-cycle

Combine all these options and it’s easy to see why so many Americans are finding ways to cut their costs of refilling their medications with Canadian pharmacies.

Save Money on Your Prescription Medications Today

By ordering your refills for prescription medications using an online Canadian pharmacy, you may be able to slash your out-of-pocket expenses by as much as 80% in some cases.

So even if your insurance doesn’t cover medication reimbursements, you’ll still save significantly more than using your insurance coverage to purchase your prescriptions from a pharmacy in the states.

And if you are covered for reimbursements, you may not pay much at all for the same name-brand or generic prescriptions you know and are used to taking.

Plus, with RX coupons and Flex RX payment plans, you can reduce how much you’ll pay out-of-pocket when placing your orders — especially on your very first one.

This saves you money in the long run and ensures your 3-month supply isn’t too much of a financial hit in the short term either.

So if you’re ready to start saving money on your medications, check out our list of RX coupons now.

Top 9 Questions to Ask Your Pharmacist

Pharmacists are much more than just the people who distribute drugs to patients - they also offer a wide array of patient services that are dedicated to providing accurate knowledge to patients. When it comes to asking your pharmacist questions, you’ll need to have a stable game plan in place so you can equip yourself with the confidence and knowledge you need to take your medications properly.

make a list of questions for pharmacist

Forming a strong network of healthcare professionals that are knowledgeable, professional, and supportive of your healthcare goals is key to taking care of yourself as someone who regularly takes prescription drugs, or as someone who is navigating the pharmacist/patient relationship for the first time.

Today’s market dictates that you’ll likely be able to ask your pharmacist questions in person or online, so it’s important to detail your inquiries perfectly so you’re getting the correct information. A reputable and professional pharmacist will have no problem answering any of your questions. In this post, we’re detailing some of the most important questions to ask a pharmacist.

What’s the Medication Called?

Knowing how to read and interpret your prescription medication labels is key to understanding what you’re taking, and therefore, how it will ultimately benefit you. Each medication has two names: a brand name, and a generic (common) name. For example, Tylenol is the brand name under which a company sells and markets the drug, while acetaminophen is the generic/common name that describes the active ingredient.

Labels will state both drug names, your name, the intended dose of the medication you’re to take, and the number of times you're supposed to take your dose each day. Ask your pharmacist questions about reading and understanding the medication label so you know what you’re taking and understand that basics of your prescription.

What Does the Medication Do?

There are typically two different types of prescription medications:

  • Some medication cure illness/infection, like antibiotics.
  • Some medications are used to control symptoms, including pain killers.

Knowing what your medication is supposed to do will give you a better understanding of what it’s supposed to do for you as you take it.

How Should I Take my Medication?

how to take your medication

Asking your pharmacist questions about the specifics of taking your medication is likely to be the first important inquiry most prescription-fillers will have. Be prepared to ask specific questions about:

  • When should you take your meds?
    • Most medications are designed to be taken at specific times of the day, and need to be taken consistently. Others are more relaxed.
  • Should they be taken with/without food?
  • If your medication is taken orally, can it be crushed or does it have to be taken in pill form?
  • Should you refrain from operating any heavy machinery or driving while taking this medication?
  • Should you carry on your lifestyle as if nothing has changed?

How Long Should I Take My Medication?

how long should you take medication

Asking your pharmacist questions about the duration you need to take your medication is important because some medications take some time to kick in, and others act immediately. Likewise, some prescriptions are short term in scope, while others need to be taken for a lifetime.

Come prepared with questions to ask your pharmacist about the duration of time you need to stay on your medication, and how long is required to make a difference in your condition; for example, antibiotics typically require the entire course of treatment be completed to have a lasting effect. Even if you begin to feel better within a couple of days, or a week - it’s crucially important to know about the release and use of each medication you’re taking to better understand how it can help you adapt your use.

What are the Potential Side Effects on my Medication?

Some medication side effects are very serious, and can require immediate medical attention. Other medications may feature mild side effects that don’t require rushing to the hospital. Ensuring you’re aware of all the potential side effects is critical to confidently and safely taking your medications.

Your doctor likely won’t go over all of the potential side effects of the medications they prescribe to you, and sometimes the print literature or information available online can be overwhelming and confusing to first-time takers.

Asking your pharmacist questions about potential side effects not only educates you about the medications you are about to begin taking, but it will also help to put a personal touch on the entire process, eliminating the dry instruction-based tips and lists of side effects often included in medication brochures or printed info. You can also make a point to ask your pharmacist questions on how to deal with mild side effects, rather than stopping to take the medication all together.

Will This Medication React with my Other Prescriptions?

Come prepared with a list of any other medications you’re currently taking, and ask your pharmacist questions about any potential interference or negative reactions some medications may have with others.

How Will I know if the Medication is Working?

It’s important to ask your pharmacist to explain the approximate timeline from which your meds will begin to take effect, and how you can expect to feel and react when they do. This way, you’ll be prepared to monitor the drug’s activity and its impact on your specific situation - further, you’ll also be able to take positive action if you do not notice the medication begin to work.

What If I Miss a Dose?

We’re all human, and sometimes life and a busy schedule can get in the way of consistently taking your medications on time, contributing to a missed dose. Ask your pharmacist questions about potential repercussions of missing a dose of your prescription medication, and what it could mean for your recovery or treatment of a disease or condition.

As we’ve mentioned in this post already, some medications are required to be taken at very specific times in order to release active medicinal ingredients into your system at an optimal point - others are less strict - so knowing what your options are should you miss a dose is proactive information to be make yourself aware of.

How Should I Store My Medication?

Ask your pharmacist about how to store your drugs in the most appropriate way to prolong their shelf life, and maintain their effectiveness. As a general rule, most prescription medications should be stored in a dark, dry area at room temperature. There are other medications that will require constant refrigeration.

Knowing how to accurately store your medications will hugely impact other aspects of its effectiveness and ability to help you - when stored properly, medications will work more consistently with what you’re expecting them to do, helping your doctor and pharmacist to accurately judge your progress. Improperly storing a medication could lead your healthcare team to unnecessarily prescribe different meds should they expire or underperform.  

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Asking your pharmacist questions is part and parcel to being a responsible and engaged prescription medication patient. Knowing full well all of the possible side effects, when, how, and why you’re taking the meds you’re taking is elemental to giving yourself the tools to take care of your body and your overall well being in a way that makes you happy, comfortable, and confident with your situation.