Archive for August, 2016

A Look at Asthma

Posted by on August 31st, 2016

Inhaler used for asthma treatment over money

Asthma afflicts roughly 24 million Americans of all ages. It’s a condition that is usually associated with childhood, but people of all ages suffer from it. According to the Mayo Clinic, “Asthma is a condition where one’s airways narrow and swell and produce extra mucus. This can make breathing difficult and trigger coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath.” To say that this condition can be uncomfortable is putting it mildly. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, Asthma-related issues cause 2 million emergency room visits each year with an average stay being 3.6 days. There are 3,630 asthma related deaths each year.

Asthma sufferers are among the millions of Americans who have to take prescription medications to manage a chronic condition. Like millions of other Americans, people suffering from asthma are overcharged for their prescription medications. Asthma medications, just like other drugs can have their prices changed at the will of the manufacturer. However, the price of Asthma inhalers in particular has increased, in part, by a combination of a landmark environmental agreement and a quirk of the law.

In 1987 26 countries agreed to the Montreal Protocol which sought to reduce substances which deplete the ozone layer, one of those substances was chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). A common use for CFCs was as a propellant in inhalers. In 1996, hydrofluoroalkane (HFA), an ozone-safe propellant was developed. As the number of products using HFA became more common, the FDA announced inhalers containing CFCs would no longer be legal as of the end of 2008.

After CFCs were banned in favor of new propellants, inhalers needed to be redesigned to ensure they were still providing the same dose of medication as they did previously. This redesign permitted drug makers to re-patent old medications and get a new period of exclusivity. Nothing about the medication itself had changed, only the delivery method. This allowed manufacturers to increase their prices and continue to prevent competition from generic equivalents.

Asthma medications are already very pricey. For example at GoodRx.com, Advair and Symbicort are priced between $420 and $350 per inhaler, which is roughly a one-month supply, respectively. As high deductible health insurance plans become more common in the U.S. more people are going to be facing a greater burden in order to pay for their prescription drugs. Unfortunately asthma is not a temporary condition but requires continuous use of medication to manage.

Too many people have had to ration their medication usage, or have stopped taking their medication altogether, due to the high cost of their drugs. Canada Drugs offers a wide range of medications for asthma sufferers and provides them at a significant savings over local US prices.


Prescription Drug Abuse is a Public Health Issue

Posted by on August 29th, 2016

Prescription DrugsPrescription drug abuse is a problem that is having a horrific impact on families all over the US and Canada. Fifty-two million Americans have used prescription drugs for non-medical reasons at least once during their life. About 50 people in the US die every day from prescription pain killer overdoses; that’s over 18,000 per year. In 2012 a survey found that approximately 410,000 Canadians had abused prescription drugs. It’s not a problem that respects national boundaries.

There is a perception that if a doctor prescribes a drug it is safe to be used by anyone. However, doctors prescribe medication based on the individual circumstances of each patient they are treating. Prescription drugs are prescribed to treat specific conditions and are intended to be used under a doctor’s supervision. This allows a doctor to vary or change the medication according to the patient’s individual conditions. Taking medication that’s not prescribed for you or not taking it as directed by a doctor, is dangerous.

Prescription painkillers can be obtained from many sources. Some people purchase it illegally on the street. Others get it from friends or family members who have it for legitimate conditions. Many people stop using them before the end of their scheduled treatment and still have the extras sitting around the house. The widespread prescribing of painkillers in North America means that these drugs are widely available.

Perhaps one of the easiest things you can do to prevent prescription drug abuse is to properly dispose of prescription drugs you’re no longer taking. According to Consumer Reports 60% of Americans who have taken prescription pain killers in the past have kept the remaining tablets, rather than properly disposing of them. Yet safe disposal is very simple. In Canada you can take your old medications to nearly any local pharmacy for proper disposal; in the U.S. you can take medications to pharmacies and sites designated as a DEA-authorized collector. Find one near you by clicking here.

Prescription drug safety is extremely important. Do not take medications that are not prescribed for you by a doctor, do not take medications outside the parameters established by your doctor, and if you have questions about the safety, effectiveness, or usage of your medication, speak to your doctor or pharmacist.

Please Note: CanadaDrugs, and other legitimate online Canadian pharmacies, do not sell narcotics, opioids or addictive substances.


Third Party Verification Benefits Everyone

Posted by on August 24th, 2016

Verified Grunge Stamp

When checking out our website you may have noticed that Canada Drugs is accredited by a few different organizations. One of those is PharmacyChecker.com. Diane Archer, Chair of Consumers Union, the publisher of Consumer Reports, recently conducted an interview with Kelly Ann Barnes, Vice President of PharmacyChecker.com, about online pharmacies and the process PharmacyChecker uses to verify them.

PharmacyChecker is an independent company that verifies U.S. and international online pharmacies and also provides price comparison tools for online shoppers. The interview covered many common questions about international online pharmacies and the methods that PharmacyChecker uses to verify that online pharmacies are safe.

In one of the more interesting parts of the article, Barnes noted that PharmacyChecker has never received any reports of people being harmed by drugs bought from a PharmacyChecker approved pharmacy. This is important because the pharmaceutical lobby likes to insinuate that Americans cannot trust any international online pharmacies due to concerns of getting counterfeit or unsafe medications. It is an accusation that has been used to paint all online pharmacies as unsafe, and it is unfair.

Independent third party verification is welcomed by legitimate online pharmacies. Along with licensing by regulators, third party verification provides another level of safety and oversight. Third party verification not only provides additional security for consumers but also works to debunk the myths that exist about the online pharmacy industry.

Canada Drugs is a pharmacy verified by PharmacyChecker.com. This verification means we have met, and continue to meet, the strict standards of practice required by PharmacyChecker. Canada Drugs is also verified by the Canadian International Pharmacy Association (CIPA), an organization which certifies Canadian online pharmacies. Further, we are licensed by the College of Pharmacists of Manitoba.

Third party verifications are important because they provide independent oversight and confirmation that the pharmacy you are ordering with is legitimate. While rogue pharmacies are a concern, verifying pharmacies through organizations like PharmacyChecker and the Canadian International Pharmacy Association is a good way to avoid them.


Obamacare Rates to Increase

Posted by on August 22nd, 2016

Mexican man feeling frustrated with bills

Healthcare is going to get more expensive…that’s probably stating the obvious. According to Politico the average rate increase request under Obamacare, nationally, is 24%. In Tennessee the requested rate hikes are even more dramatic, Cigna is requesting a 46% increase, and Humana is requesting a 44% increase. The numbers will vary from state to state but the point is that the cost of healthcare is going to go up in 2017. The average approved rate increase so far is 17%.

Americans pay some of the highest health care costs in the world. Despite the fact that Obamacare has made health insurance available to millions more Americans, the actual costs of healthcare keep piling up. Premium hikes can be attributed to several issues. The obligation to insure people without regard to any pre-existing medical conditions or other general health issues has caused insurer’s costs to rise; and at least two programs designed to help insurers mitigate any large losses they might sustain are also set to expire in 2017.

Prescription drug prices also factor into this. Higher drug prices force insurers to examine their costs and what they cover. Some, like CVS and Express Scripts, will change their formularies or the prescription drugs they cover. They may swap out one medication for a cheaper option or drop certain medications altogether. High drug prices, in conjunction with other medical cost increases, make insurers look for ways to save money and/or hike premiums offset the larger financial payouts they are facing.

In times of ever higher healthcare costs, a lot of people are looking to save money any way they can. Many Americans have turned to purchasing their prescription drugs online from Canadian pharmacies to save money.

High prescription drug costs are a big cost to insurers and consumers alike. As drug prices increase they play a part in insurance companies’ calculations into what they need to charge in terms of premiums. High prescription drug prices may not be the biggest driver of premium rate hikes but they certainly play a part in them.


Higher Drug Prices in 2016

Posted by on August 18th, 2016

Dollar packs in the capsule, pill. Healthcare costs or financial aid concept. 3d

If you were hoping prescription drug prices would stop rising in 2016, there is bad news. In a recent article, researchers at the University of Illinois College of Pharmacy have projected that prescription drug prices could increase by another 13% this year. The painfully high cost of prescription drugs in the US has become a quality of life issue for many of our American patients.

It’s not a secret that Americans pay the highest prices for prescription drugs in the world. Even if you’re insured you may find that your out-of-pocket costs are prohibitively high. People living with chronic conditions and/or fixed incomes are often the most vulnerable when it comes to price hikes on prescription drugs. High prices have forced people to try and find other savings so they can get the drugs they need. Some have simply not filled their prescriptions; they have cut back on personal spending, even on necessities like food, clothing, or rent. Some have postponed their retirements just so they can keep their incomes and health insurance to afford their prescription drugs.

Seniors are often the most adversely affected. Many are living on fixed incomes from social security and cannot compensate for massive price changes. We have heard countless stories from seniors who were being forced to not buy groceries so they could afford their medication, or they were not taking their medication because they couldn’t make any cuts to their already strained finances. Canada Drugs provides safe, affordable medications from regulated supply chains at low prices so that people don’t have to make those decisions. If you would like a quote please do not hesitate to contact us and talk to one of our trained Patient Services Representative.