Alexa, does Amazon Pharmacy offer the lowest drug prices?

Answered by Lucia Mueller | Posted November 18, 2020

In a country full of medical debt and sticker shock at the pharmacy counter, could Jeff Bezos, of all people, be here to save us? Amazon Pharmacy has just launched, offering American patients in 45 states yet another way to shave their prescription medication bills. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our pessimism skepticism. Patients who face high drug costs in this country are tired. So very tired of having this politician or that social media influencer give a passionate speech about people needing affordable prescription drugs. Utterly exhausted at seeing the hundredth discount coupon or drug delivery startup. So when I read that a trillion-dollar company is offering its uninsured Prime Members up to 80 percent savings off generic medications and up to 40 percent off brand-name drugs, I think “The nerve!” The nerve of Amazon to not use its weight to actually fix our broken pharmaceutical pricing marketplace, instead of just adding to the dumpster fire. (Brand name drugs sold at international online pharmacies are still over 90% cheaper than Amazon’s “discount.”)

Related: Amazon’s Pharmacy Should Support Importation to Offer Lower Drug Prices

Check out Dr. Patel's honest review on Amazon Pharmacy prices:

Let’s see how Amazon Pharmacy could potentially help you and your family save money on your pharmacy bill.

Does Amazon Pharmacy deliver savings?

Below, we’ve given some examples of Amazon Pharmacy prices compared to prices listed at PharmacyChecker-accredited international online pharmacies. We also included Amazon Prime Membership drug prices and those available at your local pharmacy if you use the U.S. prescription discount card available on PharmacyChecker.com. Even I couldn’t have predicted just how often international online pharmacies emerge as the clear choice in the cases of brand-name drug savings.

Amazon Pharmacy vs. PharmacyChecker Prices

Drug (generic name)
Strength
Quantity
Amazon Pharmacy Price
Amazon Pharmacy Prices (with Prime)
PharmacyChecker U.S. Discount Card Price
PharmacyChecker International Pharmacy Price
Amazon or PharmacyChecker?
Eliquis (apixaban)
5mg
30 day supply
$549.00
$480.00
Wow. Less than 50% the cost of Amazon Pharmacy even with Prime membership.
93% cheaper than Amazon Pharmacy (again, even with Prime membership)
PharmacyChecker. By a mile.
The bonus? The generic is available to order internationally for even less.
Viagra (sildenafil)
100mg
20 day supply
$1,866.60
$1,140.60
1,480.00
Ok, Amazon Pharmacy takes a win on local pricing.
86% off of Amazon Pharmacy’s “discount.”
PharmacyChecker to drastically cut costs.
Amazon Pharmacy if you’d like to only order domestically.
Sildenafil
20mg
30 day supply
$242.10
$7.50
Neck and neck.
$21.60
Amazon Pharmacy’s Prime membership will get you the cheapest generic Viagra.
Januvia (sitagliptin)
100mg
30 day supply
$609.90
483.00
$473.90
PharmacyChecker’s discount coupon for the win!
94% cheaper than Amazon Pharmacy’s discount.
PharmacyChecker-accredited international pharmacies are tough to beat.
Xarelto (rivaroxaban)
10mg
30 day supply
$578.10
$479.40
$463.80
PharmacyChecker local Xarelto discounts are cheaper than ordering through Amazon Prime.
91% cheaper.
PharmacyChecker.
With a 91% savings off even the steepest Amazon discount, ordering online from an international pharmacy is the wisest choice.
Glucophage (metformin)
1000mg
30 day supply, 2 tablets per day
$188.40
$124.20
$129.00
PharmacyChecker
Metformin
1000mg
30 day supply, 2 tablets per day
$123.60
$3.00
$9.00
$16.80
Amazon Pharmacy is your best bet for the cheapest price!
Wellbutrin XL (bupropion)
150mg
30 day supply
$1,855.20
$1,499.10
$531.60
The PharmacyChecker international option is 98% cheaper than Amazon Prime.
Symbicort (budesonide)
160 MCG - 4.5 MCG
1 Inhaler of 10.2 g
$451.66
$316.61
N/A
PharmacyChecker is 94% cheaper than Amazon.
Advair Diskus (fluticasone - salmeterol)
100mcg - 50 mcg
1 inhaler
$432.60
$323.40
$319.30
PharmacyChecker is 93% cheaper than Amazon.

Sources: Prices comparisons from November 2020. PharmacyChecker U.S. Discount Card Price is an example of savings based on coupon availability at pharmacies near Richmond, Texas. Lowest Accredited International Pharmacy Price based on prices listed on PharmacyChecker.com.

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Does Amazon Pharmacy deliver customer support?

Here’s a rundown of how Amazon Pharmacy works vs. the customer experience of using international online pharmacies accredited by PharmacyChecker:

Compare Amazon Pharmacy vs. PharmacyChecker International Pharmacies

Amazon Pharmacy

PharmacyChecker-accredited Pharmacy

Amazon Pharmacy marketing claims say Prime members paying without insurance can get up to 80 percent savings off generic medications and up to 40 percent off brand-name drugs. PharmacyChecker.com claims users can compare prices to get up to 90 percent savings off generic medications and 99 percent off brand-name drugs. (Yes, that’s how ridiculous U.S. prices are.)
Prime members receive a prescription savings card to use when purchasing medications at eligible local pharmacies. PharmacyChecker publishes a free discount card for use at most local pharmacies.
Amazon Prime members receive free two-day delivery. Medication ordered from outside the U.S. can normally take 2-3 weeks to arrive.
Amazon Pharmacy does not sell Schedule II controlled medications but does sell other controlled drugs. Pharmacies are not permitted to sell controlled medications, including Schedule II. Local discount coupons are available for controlled medications.
Customer support is through an online self-service option and the phone, with pharmacists available for questions 24/7. The PharmacyChecker Verification Program requires accredited pharmacies to provide patients access to a pharmacist for consultation. Accredited pharmacies must clearly publish a working telephone number and valid mailing address on their website. Some pharmacies also have a “Live Chat” option allowing patients to ask questions while on the pharmacy’s website.
Amazon Pharmacy claims it works with most insurance plans—but Prime Members need to go through the sign-up process before they can know for sure. PharmacyChecker-accredited international pharmacies do not accept U.S. health insurance. Regardless, the out-of-pocket international prices are usually much lower than U.S. pharmacy offers. PharmacyChecker’s U.S. Pharmacy Discount Card cannot be used in conjunction with insurance.
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Our Takeaway on Amazon Pharmacy

  • It’s easy to use.

  • The delivery is famously speedy.

  • You can save significantly on generics.

  • For brand name drugs, skip Amazon and stick to PharmacyChecker.

 
 

We prioritize consumer safety.

Browse our approved list of Canadian online pharmacies that are vetted for patient safety

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Updated November 20, 2020

Compare drug prices among reputable online pharmacies

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