Preparing for Prescription Drug Costs Down the Road

Three questions that can help you plan—and reduce—your future prescription costs

Updated on: June 28, 2019

Originally posted on: August 1, 2014
Former Vice President of Medicare Solutions Ms. Rabbitt specializes in helping seniors better understand the complexities of Medicare coverage. Topics include transitioning to Medicare and the appeals process.

Many baby boomers are often faced with the loss of retiree health and pharmacy benefits from their former employer.

If you are among those re-evaluating retirement finances due to changes in your retiree benefits, here are some tips to help you plan.

Don’t Guesstimate, Estimate Your Prescription Costs Now, and in the Future

Even if your prescription drug costs are not worrisome today, consider what they could be down the road as you evaluate your Medicare Part D prescription drug plan (PDP) options. While you can’t know for sure what the future holds, there are signs that can help you map out your health journey.

There are several factors that can help you determine what your healthcare costs may be in 5 or 10 years:

Question #1: Do you have, or are on the cusp of, a chronic condition?  

If you control high blood pressure or high cholesterol through diet, you may require medication at some point in the future. If your blood sugar level is higher than normal, you may be facing type 2 diabetes in the coming years.

Question #2: Does anyone in your family have a chronic illness?

Family history is a known risk factor for many common, chronic conditions such as hypertension, stroke, and diabetes — all of which will require prescription drug treatment. The conditions that afflicted your grandparents, parents and siblings as they aged can provide signs for your future health.

Question #3: Are you active? Do you take good care of yourself?

If you are not eating a healthy diet or do not engage in enough physical activity, you are at risk for a chronic medical condition that could require medication.

Preparing for Chronic Conditions Today May Reduce the Cost of Prescription Medications Tomorrow

We all like to think positively. However, the unfortunate reality is three in four Americans aged 65 and older lives with multiple chronic conditions . The cost of these conditions can be burdensome if you don’t have proper care and coverage. The good news is that many chronic conditions are controlled satisfactorily with medication and lifestyle changes.

A Part D plan that offers broad drug coverage and clinical expertise is more likely to address your current and future needs. Each year you have the option to select a new plan. It’s important to evaluate your future health needs when selecting that plan. Doing your due diligence now to select the right Part D plan can save valuable time and money tomorrow.