Why are Prescription Medications Getting More Expensive?

Different prescription pills

Reality check: prices of prescription medications are becoming more and more expensive. In fact, some believe that drug costs for people below 65 years of age may increase by 11.6% while for seniors, the increase will be up to 10% more. The change isn’t quite as drastic as in 2016, but it still makes the drugs a lot less affordable.

The higher prices are only half the problem, however. Many continue to worry about wages that simply can’t keep up with the rising prices of just about everything on the market. Fortunately for those with insufficient coverage or are uninsured, some prescription financial assistance programs exist. But why do the prices constantly increase anyway?

Defining the Causes

There’s no straightforward answer. Rather, it’s a complicated issue with many factors coming into play.

Many would attribute the high prices to the supposed monopoly of large drug manufacturers. Companies that own the patents on drugs are the ones who set the prices, with the influence of the Food and Drug Administration. Once the patents on certain drugs expire, however, other manufacturers can eventually create generic, more affordable versions.

More often than not, though, drug prices remain high due to research and development as companies look for more effective (and hopefully more affordable) versions of the medication. That involves additional spending, and to make up for it, companies increase their selling prices.

What Can You Do?

Without easy access to prescriptions, the quality of life may change since, with the added costs of medications, families would need to save more as individuals get second or third jobs.

Upon receiving a prescription, find out if a reliable generic drug is also available. You can also look for financial assistance programs in your area, as they can help provide for your prescription needs.