EquivaMeds
  
 
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EquivaMeds covers brand, generic drugs, same class medications and more to reduce your costs.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Doesn't my doctor already know this stuff?
  2. How much can I save?
  3. Can every patient save money? What if I can't save?
  4. When I join, do I get my prescriptions from EquivaMeds?
  5. Is EquivaMeds a discount club or Canadian pharmacy?
  6. I'm not sure how to bring this up with my doctor. Can you help?
  7. I prefer to bring this to my doctor's attention myself. Can you help?
  8. Is my information secure?
  9. Is EquivaMeds supported by pharmaceutical companies?
  10. Why EquivaMeds?
  11. What is a drug "class"?
  12. Are all medications in the same-class identical?
  13. What are generics and how do they relate to the class of medications?
  14. On my health plan, they talk a lot about formulary drugs. What are those?
  15. How does my doctor choose the class of medication that is right for me?
  16. Once the class is selected, how does my physician choose my medication?

1. Doesn't my doctor already know this stuff?

Your doctor knows about equivalent-class medications. However, each health plan is different and doctors rarely have access to information about your costs.

2. How much can I save?

Equivalent-class medications are typically 33-80% less costly than heavily marketed drugs. Our system typically helps a patient save $893 per year.

3. Can every patient save money? What if I can't save?

Not every drug has an equivalent class. That’s why we let you preview your savings before you register. We also offer a unique guarantee: if we can’t show you how to save at least $120, we’ll refund your fee.

4. When I join, do I get my prescriptions from EquivaMeds?

No. You continue to use your favorite local pharmacy.

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5. Is EquivaMeds a discount club or Canadian pharmacy?

No. EquivaMeds is an information resource and does not sell or market any drugs.

6. I'm not sure how to bring this up with my doctor. Can you help?

Many people are uncomfortable about sharing their financial concerns with their doctors. Some don’t follow doctor’s orders because they can’t afford to. If you prefer, we’ll send your EquivaMeds report to your doctor on your behalf.

7. I prefer to bring this to my doctor's attention myself. Can you help?

Yes. You can print your report and take it to your next appointment.

8. Is my information secure?

Yes. EquivaMeds uses the industry’s leading data security technologies.

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9. Is EquivaMeds supported by pharmaceutical companies?

No. EquivaMeds is an independent information resource supported entirely by fees paid by the people, businesses and organizations we help.

10. Why EquivaMeds?

While generic medications are the identical chemical composition of the brand drug, there are actually other medications in the same chemical class that are not identical but are often clinically equivalent. Our trade name, EquivaMeds, is short for “equivalent medications.”

FDA Article: Facts and Myths about Generic Drugs


11. What is a drug "class"?

Every medication belongs to a class of similar medications that work in the same manner. For example, several cholesterol lowering medications work in the liver to block a key step in cholesterol production by inhibiting an enzyme called HMG-CoA Reductase. By making that key step inactive, your liver makes less cholesterol. All medications that work in this manner belong to the same-class and are called “Statins.” This class includes Mevacor, Lescol, Pravachol, Crestor, Zocor and Lipitor.

12. Are all medications in the same-class identical?

No, but they all work in an identical manner to produce results, and they all have similar complications and side effects.

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13. What are generics and how do they relate to the class of medications?

When several companies are allowed to manufacture chemically identical generic versions of a drug, the price decreases. Then consumers have the option of paying for the original brand drug or a cheaper generic drug.

FDA Article: Facts and Myths about Generic Drugs

14. On my health plan, they talk a lot about formulary drugs. What are those?

Since most health plans know that medications in the same class are very similar, they negotiate with pharmaceutical companies to see which drug in the same class can be offered at a lower price with the same effectiveness. For example, Insurance Company A may have received a great price break on Crestor and thus it is their preferred formulary drug. Insurance Company B may have been able to negotiate a better rate on Lipitor and thus they have made Lipitor their preferred formulary drug. Both companies will offer medications in the same class that are generic, but the agreement with pharmaceutical companies is that they dissuade you financially from using their competitor’s medication.

15. How does my doctor choose the class of medication that is right for me?

Once your doctor determines that your condition requires medication, he or she will typically begin by selecting a drug class. After that, it becomes a matter of preference and experience. Your doctor might prescribe a generic, knowing that they are more affordable for you. However, when prescribing brand-name drugs, he or she doesn’t know what kind of deal your insurance company may have negotiated with the drug companies.

16. Once the class is selected, how does my physician choose my medication?

There are many factors that come into play. Unfortunately, your formulary is rarely considered. Doctors often have samples available of costly drugs. This is a short-term solution for you. Another factor is advertising; patients often ask for a costly drug by name.

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