How to reduce your drug costs

October 19, 2010 Brent Solseng

North Dakota prescription drug sales totaled more than $488 million at retail pharmacies in 2009, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. By comparison, total sales nationwide reached more than $217 billion.

Want to lower your drug costs? Here are a few suggestions:

Use generic drugs

Whether it's a prescription drug or over-the-counter medication, generics can cost up to 80 percent less than their brand-name counterparts.

Qualify for state-sponsored programs

Even people with insurance coverage may qualify, so check it out. You may qualify for a free or discounted drug program.

Talk with your doctor

Take a complete list of your medications to your next doctor's appointment, so you can discuss your current drug costs with your doctor. He or she may be able to find ways to reduce your drug costs.

Live a healthy lifestyle

By exercising on a regular basis, eating a healthy diet, stopping smoking and taking good care of yourself, you can reduce or avoid the need for medications that treat health problems such as diabetes, heart disease and hypertension.