PharmacyChecker Blog

Helping Americans Get The Truth About Prescription Drug Savings
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Extra! Extra! Get your highly discounted FDA-approved generic drugs at local U.S. pharmacies using the free PharmacyChecker Prescription Discount Card.

That’s right, folks. There’s no need to buy online and import from Canada, or even from India, to save money when it comes to most commonly dispensed generic drugs.

We researched prices of the 40 most commonly dispensed generic drugs in the U.S. to compare them to ones offered at accredited pharmacies in Canada. Four of the generics are controlled drugs, which are not available to U.S. consumers from PharmacyChecker-accredited international online pharmacies; and two of them are not available in Canada. Out of the 34 drugs we compared prices on, 88% were cheaper in the U.S. than in Canada and at an average savings of 68%.

Here’s a wild example:

A prescription non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug called meloxicam, the generic version of Mobic, will run a potential individual American patient $80.89 for 100 pills if they choose to buy from Canada. With the PharmacyChecker Prescription Discount Card, it’s only $11.08 at their neighborhood pharmacy in the U.S.


Lisinopril is $72 bucks in Canada: $10 bucks in the U.S (in my very own Brooklyn). If you’re getting that drug by importing it for your personal use from Canada, then STOP! It’s much cheaper in the U.S. and you get to support your local pharmacy, which is great!

Here’s what you’ll see when you search for lisinopril discounts on PharmacyChecker (highlight added for emphasis):

Independent pharmacies are often cheaper than chain Pharmacies like Walgreens and CVS

It’s important to note that mom-and-pop pharmacies are often cheaper than chain pharmacies, such as Walmart, Rite Aid, CVS, etc. These chains are referred to as “Big Pharmacy.”

In this day and age, many people are still “consumers of habit” even when it comes to their prescription drugs. Many automatically go to the big guys out of convenience. We recommend saving money at your independent mom-and-pop pharmacies, which, in turn, support local businesses, of course.

Generics being cheaper here than Canada isn’t entirely breaking news

I know that this isn’t entirely new. Hell, the FDA pointed to back in 2004 to help Americans see the truth about drug prices. The FDA’s recommendation to check prices on PharmacyChecker was based on our research from 2003 in which we recommended savings specifically on brands in Canada and generics at U.S. wholesale clubs, like Costco.

We’re still dealing with the same drug price problems. In fact, for many—such as patients that need insulin, cancer patients paying co-insurance for super expensive medicines, and those facing insane price spikes on off-patented drugs—things have gotten worse.

U.S. vs. Canada Drug Market Analysis

America has the biggest market for generic drugs in the world. And it’s a free market. Many drug companies compete for prices and that means very low prices. Canada’s government does control drug prices – but just on patented, brand products – not generics. Fewer generic drug companies compete in the Canadian market, and so prices remain closer to the brand drugs. In fact, I dare say Canadians who are slipping though the healthcare system cracks, about a million, could benefit from access to U.S. pharmacies.

Mostly Doesn’t Mean Always

Sometimes generic drugs are cheaper in Canada and even more so in other countries.

Here’s a big one:

Albuterol inhalers cost $59.40 in the U.S. with the PharmacyChecker Discount Card vs. $17.19 from a Canadian pharmacy. In fact, in this case, Canada has the cheapest inhalers, compared to many other countries as well.

Another example of lower generic drug prices in Canada is generic Crestor, rosuvastatin calcium: $43.78 in the U.S. vs. $21.04 for 90 pills in Canada.

By comparing prices on PharmacyChecker, people will catch these more hidden savings.

Brand Drug Savings Made Clear: Go International

While I’m pumped to help Americans find lower-cost generics here at home, our website now makes the international savings on brands more abundantly clear.

For example, here’s a search for brand-name Xarelto in White Plains:  

As you can see, the per pill cost in White Plains, NY is $15.67.

SAVINGS ALERT: It’s only $1.31 from a PharmacyChecker-accredited international online pharmacy.

PharmacyChecker also provides information on Xarelto Patient Assistance Programs. These programs generally are most helpful to Americans who are uninsured but earn too much money to be on Medicaid.

Well, there it is. PharmacyChecker offers a hattrick when it comes to practical prescription drug savings information:

1) prescription discount card savings at local U.S. pharmacies,

2) patient assistance programs, and

3) comparing prices among accredited international online pharmacies.

In addition to our advocacy efforts to lower drug prices in the United States, I’m proud to finally provide comprehensive savings information for patients struggling to afford their medications. If you have any suggestions for how we can best continue to do so, let me know.

When it comes to drug prices, it’s the patient voice that matters most.

I’m all ears.

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