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I was wondering if anyone used Sam's Club or Walmart prescription program instead of a Medicare drug plan.
I checked the 3 drugs that my husband and I are currently using and they can be purchased at Sam's Club/Walmart for $5. That's pretty inexpensive.
Anyone?
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Sure I checked out the Walmart plan and found cheaper alternatives - next fall when things open up, use the medicare website. It works very well.

Gordon
Atanta
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Cheaper than $5 for a prescription?
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You wrote Cheaper than $5 for a prescription?

If some portion of "and found cheaper alternatives" is unclear, you have my sympathy.

Gordon
Atlanta
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If some portion of "and found cheaper alternatives" is unclear, you have my sympathy.


Wow. I came here looking for help and this is your answer?
Sorry if I misunderstood you.
In my neck of the woods, $5 for a prescription is considered almost free.
If you found cheaper alternatives, good for you.
No need to respond further. Maybe someone else has info that I could really use.
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I have used the Walmart/Humana plan for the past 2 years. I pay $15/mo for the part D plan, have a $300 copay, but after I reach that, all but a couple of my Rxs are free. This plan uses RightsourceRX for the mail order. If I have an RX needed right away, I fill it at WMT however.

WMT is quite close to us, but I wasn't willing to forego the Part D and end up paying a penalty later on if I needed to sign up.

It comes down to what you are comfortable with, and what if ongoing medical problem and pre-existing conditions. Just remember, things can change in a heartbeat.

btw: What WMT offers isn't really a plan, it is simple inexpensive generic prescription drugs filled for 30 or 90 days.
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I agree with Bobkitty. I too have used the Humana/Walmart Medicare Part D plan for the last year (since I got on Medicare). It works fine.

I get a bit frustrated with the RigthSource website as renewing prescriptions is not as easy as it should be and often at least takes a phone call, but they seem to be working on it. For my prescription needs (mostly generics but some second tier generics), it is the most economical plan and with a few hassles meets my needs.

Gordon, please tell us about the plan you use.
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Paul the Medicare Part-D system give me several plans. The lowest cost option for me turned out to be First Health Value Plus. If I had different medications it is very likely this would not be the lowest total cost. It happens all my drugs are generic and pretty old drugs even for generics - with the exception of a generic statin which has been out for maybe 20 years. I have no co-pay, no deductible and a monthly premium of $25.70

Just in case anybody reading this thread is considering not enrolling in Part-D - You need know what the penalties are. You will pay a 1% per month up charge is you enroll later. So say you don't enroll for 2 years - 24 months. That means when you do enroll, not matter what plan you choose, your premium will be 124% of the normal premium. No question those of us in good health can save a buck or two. But my wife and I care for a friend whose drugs costs are hundreds a month even with Part-D insurance. Some cancer drugs are thousands a month.

Gordon
Atlanta
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I signed up for the Walmart Humana health plan. If you use generics, it's the cheapest thing going.

If you don't sign up for a drug plan, and you must select one, then the cost if you later need to get on it is quickly 'skyrocketed' by 2% a month or something like that, for every month you didn't get on the plan.


So you want to be on a drug plan.

I only use one generic..it's like $7 every 3 months.....

plus I pay about $15/month for the drug plan...there in case you need expensive meds at some point...


t.
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The lowest cost option for me turned out to be First Health Value Plus.

Gordon, does First Health Value Plus have an online mail capability to fill prescriptions?
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From 2007 to early 2012, I got almost all of my prescription drugs at WalMart. However, I was constantly having troubles getting refills from their mail order service. I did have one drug that cost me $156 per month from their retail store, but a 3-month supply from mail order was only $128. And I did get one prescription filled at the store for $23, but 3 weeks later the refill at the same store would have cost me $87.

I switched over to Walgreen's last year, and am much happier with them. Some drugs are cheaper, some a little more expensive. However, Walgreen's does have a $20 annual fee for using their discount list.

In both cases, the cheaper drugs are on a list at their web site, so you should be able to do easy comparisons.

Diabetic supplies are MUCH cheaper at WalMart (which makes me wonder if the founders had family members with Diabetes). For example, a vial of Insulin is $24.88. Anywhere else I've gone for the same is about $80.
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I do not think so, but they do have a list of preferred pharmacies. If you stray from that list, your normally "free" generics will be in the range of $5. All other prescriptions are also a bit higher -- maybe $3 or $4. I do not know all the preferred pharmacies, but Target and Walgreens are two national options. 90 day supplies of a much better deal for chronic medications like hypertension.

Gordon
Atlanta
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which makes me wonder if the [Walmart] founders had family members with Diabetes

The data I see makes me think the Walmart generic drug program is primarily a merchandizing gimich. It is intended to get people into their local Walmart store at regular intervals in hopes they will buy additional items there.

I notice that when you get a $4 prescription filled at Walmart they print the actual cost at the top of the receipt. I presume the difference between $4 and cost gets charged to an advertizing/merchandising account.

Walmart is very good at various aspects of their business. Merchandizing is one of their strengths. Groceries are another merchandizing item. They are low margin even for Walmart, but they bring people into the stores and allow Walmart to double the density of its stores.
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The data I see makes me think the Walmart generic drug program is primarily a merchandizing gimich. It is intended to get people into their local Walmart store at regular intervals in hopes they will buy additional items there.

For the vast majority of my prescriptions, I ordered the refills on the website and had them shipped to me for free. So I didn't need to visit the local Walmart store at regular intervals.
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"For the vast majority of my prescriptions, I ordered the refills on the website and had them shipped to me for free. So I didn't need to visit the local Walmart store at regular intervals. "

I've got 3 Walmarts within 5 miles of the house.

I use one about 4 miles away....after 3 months are up, call them up on the phone...automated system. Enter my prescription number, and presto....next day after 10am it's available for pickup at the drive through window.

The doc sends it in electronically once a year....no hassles....

I do my grocery shopping at Walmart. Good prices. We got a Kroger, Tom Thumb and who knows what else around here.....too.....

Did my bi-weekly shopping this morning at 8am. In and out in 20 minutes......or less. Roma tomatoes,grapes, banana, spinach leaves, carrots, one frozen pizza, some chicken, a ham steak, milk, some dish detergent, walnuts, .....blueberries, ...I think that was about it. Had a stock of apples from last visit. Got enough pancake mix and eggs and cereal for a while. Same for bread. And frozen stuff.



t
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For the vast majority of my prescriptions, I ordered the refills on the website and had them shipped to me for free. So I didn't need to visit the local Walmart store at regular intervals.

Yes, that is correct for the Walmart/Humana Medicare Pt D program. But my comment was in reference to the earlier Walmart generic prescription program available to the public without insurance. (Some found Walmart generics available for less than their health insurance copays.)
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...that is correct for the Walmart/Humana Medicare Pt D program. But my comment was in reference to the earlier Walmart generic prescription program available to the public without insurance. (Some found Walmart generics available for less than their health insurance copays.)

I've never been on Medicare Pt D.

I haven't had insurance for my prescription drugs since 2006. It's why I used the generic prescription drug program at WalMart, and now do at Walgreen's. Both have free shipping on refills of prescription drugs.
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I have 3 Walmart SuperCenters within 5 miles as well. Unfortunately, none of them have a pharmacy drive-up window.

But I have 10 Walgreen's within 5 miles. All with drive-up pharmacy windows, two of which are open 24 hours a day.

We also do a lot of grocery shopping at WalMart. Overall, the cheapest prices, and they also price match. But they can have limited selection of brands, and too often the shelf is empty for something we're interested in getting -- especially since we only go there about once a month (we get breakfast and either lunch or dinner at our retirement facility). We would like to go at 8 am, but usually save the grocery trips for when I need more diabetic supplies, and the pharmacy doesn't open until 9 am (or 10 am on Sunday).
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It comes down to what you are comfortable with, and what if ongoing medical problem and pre-existing conditions. Just remember, things can change in a heartbeat.


I realize that things can change in a heartbeat. I have been undergoing treatment for a DVT (blood clot) in my left leg. Ten years ago I suffered a massive blood clot in my right leg. Had bleeding incident 3 weeks after diagnosis due to an INR that was too high. (meaning, the dosage for the blood thinner was too high).
Hospital bill was in the thousands. Thank goodness my DH is still employed and insurance covered a good portion. Our drugs are free for the moment but in two weeks time we will have to go on COBRA for me, Medicare for DH.
Thanks for the info!
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Sounds like Walmart/Humana is the way to go. I will check it out.
Thanks!
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I am excited to be moving to a town that has a Walmart and several large grocery stores. I live in Brooklyn now and the stores are terrible and the prices are double what they are in the town that we will be relocating to.
If I want to go to Home Depot I have to ride the subway into the city otherwise be ripped off at the local hardware store who charges an arm and a leg for everything.
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No question those of us in good health can save a buck or two. But my wife and I care for a friend whose drugs costs are hundreds a month even with Part-D insurance. Some cancer drugs are thousands a month.


I did not sign up for partD because my supplement insurance (company provided) has drug benefits which were wonderful, with CareMark. This year, the plan went to CareMark's SilverScript - CVS Caremark Part D Services. So I guess I am now signed up for Part D? My generic drugs are $10 for 90 days. Non-generic are $75 for 90 days. Any drugs from the drug store are only for 30 days...generics and antibiotics $4-5. I have the PartD Medicare DoNut hole now too.

Birgit
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I did not sign up for partD because my supplement insurance (company provided) has drug benefits which were wonderful, with CareMark.

If you go back and slog through the plan's paperwork you'll probably find verbiage to the effect that the plan "counts" as Part D coverage.

Phil
Rule Your Retirement Home Fool
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Birgit wrote
I did not sign up for partD because my supplement insurance (company provided) has drug benefits which were wonderful, with CareMark. This year, the plan went to CareMark's SilverScript - CVS Caremark Part D Services. So I guess I am now signed up for Part D?


How would I know what you are signed up or not for? But I do suggest you find out for at least these two reasons.

#1 I am not aware of any requirement a company provided drug plan cannot be canceled, changed or whatever at any time -- like in January.
#2 If you do not have an exclusion/exemption every month since you turned 65 without a Part-D plan will increase your future Part-D premiums by 1% from when you start until you stop paying for Part-D insurance. You could well be in a situation where saving a few bucks a year now will cost you more bucks a year for decades.

In the case of medicare medical insurance (Part-B), you avoid penalties and preserve your guaranteed right to buy insurance if and only if your have company medical insurance that provides coverages Medicare says meets/exceeds the Medicare standards. More specifically, medicare must approve the insurance plan each year. For major companies, the annual approvals by Medicare are pretty automatic for the insured. I have never heard that a similar exemption exists for Medicare Part-D.

CareMark is a brand name that offers Medicare Advantage Plans. If your "supplement insurance" is actually a Medicare Advantage Plan - these most often (as I understand it) include drug coverage satisfying the Part-D requirements.

This link
http://www.medicare.gov/supplement-other-insurance/medigap/w...
says as of January 1, 2006, Medigap or Medicare Supplement policies have not been allowed to provide drug coverage.

In the event you dig into this, I suggest you get your terms correct.

Gordon
Atlanta
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DH & I both used the Walmart/Humana Part D plan for two years. For 2013, I changed to First Health because even though the monthly cast for the plan ($28.10) is $10 higher than the Humana, there is no deductible. Since my four RX are all generic, all except one was less than $10 for 90 days, but I still had to pay for them.

I found First Health by using the Medicare web site and entering my prescriptions. Even with the higher monthly cost, because my prescriptions are zero cost with no deductible, First Health was cheaper than Walmart/Humana. I can use Walmart, Target, Walgreen, and Kroger to fill them. I had to get prior approval on one, but it took only a phone call.

Carol
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