Drug manufacturer rebates and drug discounts are related, but they are not the same thing. In the complicated world of the U.S. prescription drug market, it’s easy to get confused about prices, benefits, discounts, rebates and co-pays. In fact, drug prices can differ up to $100 between one pharmacy and another one on the adjacent corner. Drug prices depend on whether you have insurance or not, whether you ask for a generic or not, whether you’re a member of a pharmacy or not, and more. One of the reasons that drug prices vary so widely is due to drug manufacturer rebates.
Rebates Offset Costs for Large Firms
Through several contracts and agreements, pharmaceutical companies give back to organizations and corporations that purchase large quantities of drugs. Drug rebates is how major organizations like Medicaid, health insurance companies, pharmacy benefit managers, and large employers offset the price of prescription drugs. In some cases, pharmaceutical companies are required to give rebates to an organization, which is the case with programs like Medicare and Medicaid. Other companies get drug manufacturer rebates because they agree to buy in bulk and sell so many of each medication.
These rebates rarely get passed on to the level of small businesses or to the individual. Even if you have health insurance with prescription drug coverage, you may end up having to pay the same co-pay fee for all brand-name drugs or all generics. If you go to the pharmacy with no insurance, you pay the full retail price with no rebate included.
Drug Discounts for Individuals
In the cases where drug manufacturer coupons or rebates are available to individuals, submission of claims, coordination with current health insurance plans and other steps may be required to receive the rebate. In some cases, manufacturers offer rebates to individuals or provide prescribing doctors with rebates to disburse to their patients. Yet, in many cases, these drug manufacturer rebates are not fulfilled by the patients due to the amount of required paperwork and coordination with insurance companies.
HelpRx discounts are different from rebates because anyone can access them with no claims or additional paperwork necessary. It doesn’t matter if you have insurance or not, or what your income level is. HelpRx doesn’t request any of this detailed information from the consumer. We are dedicated to indiscriminately passing on savings to the average person and their families in a market where no one is negotiating on behalf of the individual.