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How to Save the Most Money on 12 Top Selling Prescriptions

December 24, 2020

high drug prices

We get a lot of customers from the United States (and elsewhere) asking for information on their most-needed prescriptions. Typically, the drugs they're looking for are vital to their survival — meaning that they cannot skip doses — but they're also incredibly expensive.

Because we get so many questions about the same drugs over and over, we thought it would be helpful to put this information in one place. Here are the top 12 medications we've found save people the most money when they're purchased through NorthWestPharmacy.com, as opposed to a pharmacy in the United States.

Inhaled Corticosteroids

Inhalers pose an interesting problem in terms of patent law and pricing. Because the mechanism of inhalers varies and the device itself can be designed in different ways, manufacturers are able to patent each design. Once a new patent is in place, the manufacturer is able to gain exclusive rights to that device, which gives them additional time to charge whatever they want without competition in play to pressure them into decreasing their price.

Flovent HFA Inhaler

The Flovent HFA inhaler (fluticasone propionate) is one that is nearing the end of its patent protection period in the USA. It was approved in 2004, which means it should be eligible for generic development around 2024. It is used to treat asthma and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) on a long-term basis, and cannot substitute for a rescue inhaler.

In the United States, you can expect to pay at least $235.00 for the lowest dose (44 mcg) inhaler (120 metered doses). If you're able to buy more than one at a time, you may get a tiny break in the price per inhaler.

At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we do have access to a generic fluticasone propionate inhaler, which is very affordable. For the same dose, you can expect to pay about $32.00. If you prefer or need the brand name drug, you can still expect to pay a reasonable price — about $40.00.

Trelegy Ellipta

Trelegy Ellipta is another long-term treatment for asthma and COPD. Trelegy is the brand name, whereas Ellipta refers to the actual device, which is why you'll also see another device called Breo Ellipta on the market.

This drug is very new, in that it was approved for use in COPD patients in 2017 and adult asthma patients in 2020. It will be under patent protection for many more years, which means it's very expensive. Additionally, Trelegy includes three active ingredients (fluticasone furoate/umeclidinium/vilanterol trifenatate), as opposed to two, as long-term inhaled corticosteroids typically do.

In the United States, you can expect to pay about $635.00 for a one-month supply in the only dose in which it's available (100-62.5-25 mcg). Conversely, at NorthWestPharmacy.com, we sell Trelegy Ellipta for $132.00.

Symbicort Turbuhaler

Symbicort (budesonide/formoterol fumarate dihydrate) is one of the most common drugs prescribed for patients with asthma and COPD. It was first approved for the treatment of asthma in 2006, then for COPD in 2009, and for pediatric asthma patients in 2017.

In the U.S., you can expect to pay at least $250.00 for the lowest dose inhaler (80-4.5 mcg, 120 metered doses). Conversely, we sell the same dose of Symbicort at NorthWestPharmacy.com for just under $100.00. We also have access to a generic, which is about half the price — just $50.00.

Spiriva plus Device

Spiriva comes in a couple different formats, but the Handihaler (also known as "plus device") is a dry powder inhaler that involves a pill being crushed in a device that allows the patient to inhale the medication directly into the lungs. This form of Spiriva was approved in 2004.

In the U.S., Spiriva Handihaler costs about $516.00 for 30 pills. At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we sell the same drug for about $105.00. Additionally, we have access to a generic version, which costs about $60.00.

Antithrombotics

Antithrombotics are drugs used to help treat blood clots, sometimes in response or in preparation for surgery, but they can also be used on an ongoing basis for people with a history of blood clots.

Eliquis

Eliquis (apixaban) is an antithrombotic approved for the treatment and prevention of blood clots. It was originally approved in 2013, but has been granted extended patents for various reasons. However, a generic formulation was approved in 2020, so it won't be long before generics are available in the U.S.

In the U.S., Eliquis costs about $300.00 for a 30-day supply of the lowest dose (2.5 mg). At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we sell a 56-day supply of Eliquis for about $225.00. We also have access to a generic version already, which costs about $70.00 for a 30-day supply.

Statins

Statins are drugs used to help lower cholesterol in conjunction with a healthy lifestyle. Many of them are very cheap because they're older and generics are readily available. However, there are some exceptions.

Livalo

Livalo (pitavastatin) was approved in 2009 to treat high cholesterol. This specific drug is believed to help improve "good" cholesterol and lower triglycerides. Not all statins address high triglycerides, which makes this drug particularly special (i.e. more expensive).

A 30-day supply of Livalo in the lowest dose (2 mg) typically costs about $370.00 in the United States. At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we have a generic that costs about $45.00, as well as brand name Livalo for about $72.00.

Heart Failure

These drugs help your body pump blood when your heart is weak from chronic heart failure. The hope is that they can take enough stress off your heart to keep you out of the hospital.

Corlanor

Corlanor (ivabradine) was originally approved in 2015 for the treatment of chronic heart failure. When the heart is consistently weak and cannot pump enough blood throughout the body, it tends to beat faster to compensate. Unfortunately, this exacerbates the problem because the heart works harder, which causes it to fail faster. Corlanor is designed to slow your heart rate.

Corlanor is often prescribed alongside people who have pacemakers, as it binds to the If-channels in the device. The If-channels are responsible for sending the message to your heart to contract, which pumps blood. By binding to the If-channels, Corlanor makes sure your heart isn't beating too fast.

In the United States, Corlanor is about $550.00 for a 30-day supply (60 pills) of the 5 mg dose. However, at NorthWestPharmacy.com, we have access to a generic, which runs about $70.00 for almost double the supply (112 pills). If you need the brand name, we have that at a more affordable rate as well — $100.00 for a one-month supply (56 pills), or $180.00 for 112 pills.

Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

Asacol

Asacol (mesalamine) is an anti-inflammatory drug used to treat ulcerative colitis, which is a chronic disease that causes ulcers in the digestive tract. Mesalamine prevents the body from producing a chemical in the intestines called prostaglandin, which is an inflammatory agent.

Asacol is one of the older medications on this list (approved in 1997) — fortunately, that also means there is a generic version available. Of course, we know by now that generics are still frequently less expensive from online international pharmacies than they are in the United States.

In the U.S., the generic version of Asacol will run you about $190.00 for a one-month supply (30 pills) at the 800 mg dose. At NorthWestPharmacy.com, you can get a three-month supply (90 pills) for about $90.00 at the 800 mg dose. If you require the brand name, we also have that at a more affordable price than you'll find in the U.S. We sell a three-month supply (90 pills) for about $135.00.

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement (or regulation) therapy can be used for many reasons, such as menopause, andropause, birth control, and cancer treatment.

Vagifem

Vagifem (estradiol — an estrogen replacement) is a dissolvable tablet inserted into the vagina to help treat dryness and tissue thinning due to hormonal changes during menopause. Very little actually enters the bloodstream because it's directly applied to the affected area.

Vagifem was originally approved in 1999, and has received additional patents since then. While generics are in the works, they are still difficult to find. In the United States, you can expect to pay about $450.00 for an 18-pack of 10 mcg tablets. At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we sell 18-packs of Vagifem (10 mcg) for closer to $70.00.

Blood Sugar Regulation

Jardiance

Jardiance (empagliflozin) is sometimes prescribed to patients with type 2 diabetes to help manage their blood sugar in conjunction with a healthy diet and exercise. Empagliflozen works inside the kidneys, making it easier for them to process out glucose (sugar), which then is expelled via urine.

Jardiance was approved to assist in glycemic control in 2014. It's pretty expensive in the U.S. A one-month supply of Jardiance at the 10 mg dose runs about $585.00, which comes out to be about $20.00 per pill.

At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we sell Jardiance for a much more affordable price — about $120.00 for a 28-day supply of the 10 mg dose, which comes to about $4.29 per pill.

Ozempic

Ozempic (semaglutide) is sometimes used in patients with type 2 diabetes because it assists in incretin production, which helps moderate blood sugar levels. Ozempic is unique in that it's delivered in a prefilled injectable pen meant to be used once per week instead of once per day (as with many other diabetes medications).

Any kind of injectable pen (like the EpiPen) is likely to be more expensive, and Ozempic is no exception. In the United States, one week's worth of Ozempic (one pen) can cost between $800.00 and $900.00. At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we have Ozempic for a fraction of the price — about $300.00.

Antidepressants/Smoking Cessation Aids

Wellbutrin XL

Wellbutrin XL (bupropion extended release) is an antidepressant that is also used sometimes to help people quit smoking. Wellbutrin has been on the market for quite some time, so there are generics readily available. Regardless, there is still a significant price difference between U.S. pharmacies and international online pharmacies.

In the United States, Wellbutrin XL costs about $1535.00 for a 30-day supply in the 150 mg dose. At NorthWestPharmacy.com, a 90-day supply of the exact same dose costs about $120.00. The generic versions are much more affordable — as little as $20.00.

Affordable Resource for Americans: International Online Pharmacies

At NorthWestPharmacy.com, we pride ourselves on two things: having the lowest prices and providing the best customer service. To make sure you get the best possible price on your medication, we have a price guarantee (you won't find a lower price elsewhere). To ensure you get the exact information you're looking for, we maintain a own call center with highly trained staff through which you can also speak with a licensed pharmacist for medication counseling.

The other great thing about ordering from NorthWestPharmacy.com is that we'll deliver the exact medication your doctor prescribed straight to your door — there's no need to leave the house.

And when we say we enjoy talking to our customers on the phone, we really mean it. If you have questions about placing an order, what you'll need before you can order your medication, or methods of payment we accept, we're happy to walk you through that process. In our off-hours, we encourage you to check out our frequently asked questions, which may provide the answers you need.

If you've read through the FAQs and still have questions — or simply need to be reassured that you're placing your order correctly — please contact us today. For your convenience, we have a toll-free phone number: 1-866-539-5330. We're happy to walk you through the ordering process.

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