Do you ever feel overwhelmed with benefits and how they work? Most of us have faced a crazy price when engaging healthcare for ourselves or a loved one – and that sense of wondering whether or not it’s the right price.
A couple of years ago I was prescribed a new medication. At that time, it was covered on my insurance and cost me about $15 per month. The following year, we chose a different insurance plan. When I went to pick up my prescription in January, I was told it was 100% covered. Yep, cost me $0 – score!
Skip forward just 3 months when I went to pick up my prescription in April. The news was NOT so great. I was told the medication was no longer covered and would cost $220 for a single month’s supply – and that was for the generic! We were well into the year so changing insurance plans was not an option.
I was definitely shocked, but since I’m a freshbenies guru, I knew I had some options.
Here are my 3 tips to “Jerry Maguire” those out of pocket costs that come out of nowhere….
1. Oh, freshbenies app - you complete me
When the pharmacist dropped the $220 bombshell on me, my mind immediately ran through the 2 choices most Americans would see here: 1) stop taking the medication and roll the dice with my health, or 2) swallow hard and pay the $220. Neither were options I was willing to choose. And, as a freshbenies member, I knew I had MORE choices!
I immediately pulled out my freshbenies app and handed the pharmacist my phone with the virtual card to show I had a prescription savings plan. She ran the new cost with my Rx Savings discount and the price dropped quite a bit. Still, I wanted to make sure I got the BEST deal.
Next, I stepped out of line and used the pricing tool in my freshbenies app. I entered all of the medication details and ran a 5-mile radius cost comparison search. BINGO! My same exact Rx was available at a small pharmacy right across the street for just $32! That’s right, from $220 to $32 just by doing a quick search. If you didn’t know pharmacies can charge different prices for the exact same medications – check out this article.
But wait, there’s more! I stepped back in line and showed the search result to the pharmacist who had quoted me $220. And magically, they were able to match the $32!
2. The human brain weighs 8 pounds – and other facts
That fun little fact was noted in the movie Jerry Maguire. While we all have brains, most of us wouldn’t be able to rattle off its weight. Kind of like many of us have insurance and use it, but we don’t know every little detail. Beyond the cost, carrier and co-pays, I have to dig in further to discover more.
That day at the pharmacy, I paid the $32, but I was pretty upset my prescription was no longer covered, so I decided to call my insurance company…big mistake. After multiple transfers, holds, and zero answers I hung up and did what I should’ve done in the first place – call my freshbenies Advocate for help.
Your freshbenies Advocates can help with benefit plan questions, finding providers, reviewing and negotiating medical bills – and they can research your prescriptions in an effort to find less expensive options you may not know about. I gave all the details of my prescription story to my advocate. She discovered the 30-day supply of my prescription had come off of the list of covered medications, BUT the 90-day supply was still covered.
Who knew that was even a thing? My Advocate did! All I had to do was call my doctor and have them change my prescription to a 90-day supply instead of the 30-day. BOOM! My prescription was back to being covered and my cost went back to $0!
3. Help me help you
If you’re a freshbenies member, you have some GREAT tools to help you navigate your healthcare and out of pockets costs, but only when you activate and use it. I’ve only mentioned a couple of the services available to you and your immediate family. Sometimes a service like Advocacy, can help in ways you never imagined…
- issues related to dental and vision benefits
- review of older medical bills
- dependents who are on a different insurance plan
- parents and parents-in-law – they’re included!
Be sure to take a few minutes to poke around in your app and portal to see the other services that can help you control your family’s healthcare dime, time and peace of mind! And look for Bonnie, our chat assistant, at freshbenies.com - she’ll help you get your membership activated so you can use it whenever you need!
Now it’s your turn! Do you have an awesome savings story you’ve taken in for the win? Comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.