White Plains, NY – December 23, 2016 — Many Americans will be shocked in January when they are told to pay more for a single pill than they used to pay for an entire month's supply of their medication due to formulary changes being made by major pharmacy benefits managers. Often, however, these drugs are already available from licensed pharmacies outside the U.S. at prices 74% lower on average than in the U.S., according to an analysis by PharmacyChecker.com.
"If you are unable to switch to another drug and can't afford the new price, be aware that the same drugs are available online at much lower cost from licensed pharmacies in other countries," said Tod Cooperman, M.D., CEO of PharmacyChecker.com.
The antidepressant Effexor XR (75 mg), for example, which is being dropped by CVS Caremark, costs about $11 per pill in the U.S. Licensed pharmacies sell the same pill for $3.25 in Canada, $1.80 in the UK, and just 65 cents in Turkey.
|Drugs Being Dropped by Insurers in 2017 -- Priced By Country|
|Brand Name Drug||Price Per Pill or Unit||Max. Savings|
|Name (generic name), Strength||U.S.||Canada||AU/NZ/UK||Turkey/India|
|Xenazine (Tetrabenazine) 25 mg||$94.86||$6.86||$1.87||N/A||97%|
|Nexium (Omeprazole Magnesium) - 40mg||$6.90||$2.87||$2.87||$0.23||97%|
|Crestor (Rosuvastatin - 10mg||$6.82||$2.58||$2.20||$0.29||96%|
|Effexor XR (Venalfaxine) - 75mg||$10.96||$3.25||$1.80||$0.65||94%|
|Abilify (Aripiprazole) - 5mg||$29.88||$7.54||$6.94||$2.08||93%|
|Nilandron (Nilutamide) - 150mg||$143.25||N/A||$12.82||N/A||91%|
|Pradaxa (Dabigatan) - 150 mg||$5.94||$3.13||$3.49||$1.10||81%|
|Proventil HFA (Albuterol) inhaler - 90 mcg||$73.19||$21.66||$18.64||N/A||81%|
|Gelnique (Oxybutinin) gel sachets - 10%||$10.75||$4.13||N/A||$3.87||64%|
|Gleevec (Imatinib) - 400mg||$336.33||$148.77||N/A||N/A||62%|
|Tasigna (Nilotinib) Dose Pack - 150mg||$93.84||$35.57||N/A||N/A||62%|
|Ventolin HFA (Albuterol) inhaler - 90 mcg||$73.19||$35.10||$32.12||$30.99||58%|
|Zyclara Pump (Imiquimod) - 3.75%*||$1,040.83||$414.75||N/A||N/A||53%|
|Xtandi (Enzalutamide) - 40mg||$77.84||$40.50||N/A||N/A||47%|
|Opsumit (Macitentan) - 10mg||$250.76||$160.98||$156.93||N/A||37%|
|Average Potential Savings||74%|
|Sources: List based on formulary exclusions announced by CVS Caremark, except for Zyclara, which is being excluded by Express Scripts; U.S. prices shown are lowest prices from licensed pharmacies in Brooklyn, NY. Prices for other countries are from PharmacyChecker.com Verified Pharmacies, which require a valid prescription.|
The largest potential savings -- 97% -- is for Xenazine (tetrabenazine), a drug that treats involuntary movements caused by Huntington's Disease. In the U.S., the price is about $95 per pill, compared to $1.87 in New Zealand.
Importing medication for personal use in the U.S. remains technically illegal under most circumstances but people are not being pursued or prosecuted, and about 19 million Americans say they have imported a medication for personal use.
PharmacyChecker.com, founded in 2002, provides consumers with information to assess and compare online pharmacies and save money on medication.
For more information, contact Gabriel Levitt, President, PharmacyChecker.com at 718-387-4526 or firstname.lastname@example.org.