If you’ve ever tried to purchase a private health insurance plan, you’re probably familiar with the hoops you have to jump through in order to become insured. Between the litany of questions and the endless scrutiny of your medical records, buying an insurance plan can be extremely overwhelming.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the nation’s largest drugstore chain, Walgreen Co., is planning to start selling health insurance to customers this fall. The Tribune reported that “the Deerfield-based company will sell health insurance products with different price ranges and coverage levels from coast-to-coast through a private health insurance exchange.”
An unidentified spokesman from Walgreens said, “As always, we’re looking at a number of options in light of health care reform as we continue to seek ways to help our customers better navigate today’s health care system.”
Stopping by the pharmacy is usually an inconvenient and time-wasting errand most people don’t look forward to. Long lines and lots of waiting, all surrounded by sick people trying not to get coughed on doesn’t make for a place you want to hang out at for long.
Unfortunately, the pharmacy gets a bad rap. As a pharmacist, I know it’s not just about sick people and picking up your pills. The pharmacy can be a great health resource for you and your family, if you know how to take advantage of it, and how to get in and get out quickly. Here are 10 ways you can make your trip to the pharmacy more efficient.
1. Use the pharmacy services that are available.
If you are sick, the best thing you can do is use the drive-thru or have someone else drop off and pick up your prescription. If you need a refill for a maintenance medication for cholesterol, blood pressure or even birth control, request a fill over the phone or online. Many pharmacies are doing automatic refill by filling prescriptions a few days before you are due for your next refill. This will keep your more compliant and you won’t have to worry about running out of medication. This will save you time and gas as it will hopefully be ready at the time you request.
Do doctors have your best interests in mind? You better hope so, because if they think your concerns are unjustified, they may be giving you, well, nothing for your troubles. In other words, you may be getting a placebo instead of actual medicine. Good thing you’re spending all that money on your health insurance.