Metro-Detroiters know how expensive prescription drugs can be, especially if you don't have insurance coverage.
"Between my wife and I, we would probably spend anywhere between three and six thousand dollars a year on drugs," said Tom Mervak, an Oakland County business owner.
On April 18th, Oakland County commissioners unveiled a new program offering the Coast2CoastRX Discount card. Commissioner Jim Runestad touted its many advantages at a news conference.
"It's something that is going to cost the county nothing, but yet be a huge benefit for the residents here in Oakland County," said Runestad.
Here's how it works: In the coming weeks, Oakland County residents can get the card at pharmacies, libraries, and government offices. Then, you can use the card at just about any pharmacy. Supporters say all the national pharmacies will accept the card, and 95% of the independent drug stores are also on board.
The savings can reach 75% on some prescriptions, but average about 60%, according to Marty Dettelbach, the chief marketing officer for the company behind the card. While the card is designed to help low-income residents without insurance, anyone can use the card if the savings are greater than what you'd save with your insurance coverage.
"It's like a coupon that keeps giving, people just save every time they use it," said Dettelbach. He also said there are numerous other benefits: from dental services to diabetes equipment and even health care for your pet.
How Do You Save So Much?
If the county isn't paying for any of this, you might be wondering why you're able to save so much money. Dettelbach says his company nets about 70 or 75 cents on each transaction. The pharmacies sacrifice
their profit margin to keep people coming back to spend more money.
Even better, said Dettelbach, the Oakland County receives a small royalty of $1.25 for each transaction which puts money back into the community. County leaders have indicated they'll put that money toward health care for low-income families.
Here's the best part for non-Oakland county residents, anyone can get a card from Coast2CoastRX by signing up online and use that card to start saving money.
You do not have to live in Oakland County, or one of the 300 states, cities, or townships that have agreements with Coast2CoastRX.
Dettelbach says his company is helping consumer save $22 million a month.
Here's a link if you'd like to investigate and consider signing up: www.coast2coastrx.com