I posted recently about the Mark Cuban pharmacy, CostPlusDrugs.com, which sells direct to consumers and transparently charges a price of 15% over cost plus S&H. This now sells 300 generic drugs at large discounts from standard pharmacies with middlemen.
A group at Harvard calculated how much Medicare could save.
**Buying From Mark Cuban’s Pharmacy Could Save Medicare Billions, Study Says**
**The program for seniors could have saved as much as $3.6 billion over one year if it had bought generic drugs from the pharmacy, Harvard Medical School researchers estimate**
**By Joseph Walker, The Wall Street Journal, June 20, 2022**
**A group of Harvard Medical School researchers say that Mr. Cuban’s “cost plus” business model could also benefit health insurers, including Medicare, which spent an estimated $115.6 billion on prescription drugs last year, or nearly a third of total U.S. drug spending. ...**
**Medicare’s drug program, called Part D, was created in 2003 and prohibits the government from directly purchasing medicines. Instead, private health insurers offer hundreds of different coverage plans around the country that are supposed to compete for patients by offering the lowest possible drug costs.** [This so-called system is maddening because each potential insurer offers a different list of covered drugs that changes every year. The drugs themselves are handled by a complex supply chain of middlemen which add markups. – W]
**Yet the paper, while pointing to a potential path for trimming Medicare spending, doesn’t address the costlier, tougher target of brand-name drugs that are protected from competition by patents. In 2020, generics represented 88% of Medicare prescriptions but only 19% of spending...** [end quote]
Before buying any generic prescription, regardless of insurance, check CostPlusDrugs.com, Blinkhealth.com and GoodRx.com. You could save hundreds of dollars compared with the insured price. I did for years with my cancer drug. The cheapest way is often 90-day mail order. If we can do it, Medicare should do it also.