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  • Writer's pictureLexie

Ways To Save Money With Chronic Illness

Whoever said that living with a chronic illness is cheap…well… I have actually never heard anyone say this.

No matter the insurance, the location, or even the diagnosis, living with a chronic illness adds a lot of financial additions whether we are ready or not for them.

I know that when I first become debilitated by my illness I was at the age of 25 years old.

I didn’t have savings, I had to rely on government assistance for my medical care, and there was even a time where I ended up homeless for a bit… but that’s another story…

And even IF I had prepared for my world to be turned upside down, there still would have been costs involved.

The good news? There are solutions that are available!

The bad news? This will depend heavily on your own circumstances and situation.

Let’s check out some of the ideas that over the past decade have either been beneficial for myself or others I have spoke with in the chronic illness community.

And don't worry... we will help each other find more ideas to share in the future...


In the United States there are several drug savings programs that the pharmacies usually have information on.

A good example of two common ones are GOOD RX or WELL RX.

If your prescription needs to be name brand and is still under a patent, a lot of times the manufacturer of the medication has coupons listed on a website or can be obtained through an application online with their company.

I know when I was on Lyrica it was still under patent and had NO generic option.

The cost was right under $800 a month and this was WAY too high for me to afford, but the medication was helping my partial seizures and neuropathic pains.

When I contacted the company, I ended up paying around $400 a month, which wasn’t the greatest savings ever, but it also wasn’t a rent payment like before to buy the medication.

I eventually changed my health insurance plan to where once I met my deductible I paid ZERO for medications … I think this took me three months into the year that year… so much money spent…

Another option I found was Walmart’s $4.00 prescription program. There was no income limitation or form to fill out (at this time, it has been a while) and they offered medications like blood pressure, allergy, diabetic, etc.

I also used a local grocery store pharmacy at PUBLIX where antibiotics were FREE.

If you don’t have a PUBLIX, check at Kroger for their monthly plan and what it includes.

PUBLIX is the land of the best Boars Head turkey subs ever…and the best sweet tea… with the best customer service.. .okay, you get it…

To get the antibiotics, you took in the RX and filled out six lines on a piece of paper and THAT WAS IT! SIMPLE!

They know how transitioned to a $7.50 RX program as I researched it a few days ago from researching this topic.

To date, I personally use a compound pharmacy that saves me a lot of time and money!

I found this when I needed a specific compound for a specialty medication.

If you have never heard of one of these, do a quick google search for your area.

Sometimes they are located inside or beside a hospital and others are stand alone.

They have the ability to make medications (this is great for dysphagia and being unable to swallow capsules) and can even add flavoring for children.

It just feels more personalized to the person to me. And I have NEVER had an occurrence where I couldn’t get my medications in the past six or seven years.

The peace of mind of this would make me justify paying more money for my medications, even thought that’s not the case.

I could not be happier with using this type of pharmacy versus a chain, but I also have the most patient and empathetic pharmacist which makes it all worth while anyway.

So… what if none of these options work for saving money on medications?


We have discussed this a few times over on the Instagram and I have had a few people have great success in using this service.

Mark Cuban started a company, Cost Plus Drugs, that makes medications cheaper by "cutting out the middle man".

Basically, this is a program where generic drugs are offered at a cheaper cost to patients.

You have to get the RX order from your provider, have them fill out the form and fax it, and then your medications will be mailed to you.

Some like this service because they are based in Texas and ran by the guy from shark tank.

I have not found a “catch” with this as of now.

I do see that there are limited medications and that controlled substances or narcotics are not available.

However, I signed up for the email notifications and they have added AT LEAST 100 medications since I signed up less than a year ago.

It really seems like they are trying to add more as quickly as possible.

There is a licensed pharmacist and a support phone number available on their website.

It was an “easy process even for older adults” is what has been reported to me from someone who has used Cost Plus Drugs.

Hey, if someone is attempting to put a dent in the healthcare system short comings, I am all for it, and trying to remain optimistic.

But what if you don’t need monthly medication? What if you are in search of having emergency medication?


Let it be known that I have FOR SURE been a little worried, thanks to 2020, about the availability of certain medications.

There were people I knew who could not fill their ADHD meds or their LUPUS medications… it was a rather scary time.

This made me think (I am on immunosuppressive therapy) that if I came down with an infection, what was I going to do if the antibiotics were “out of stock”?

I am in no way trying to add fear to this situation. Please know this.

I grew up under a military structured home and am now married to a veteran. We prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

Somewhere on a late night YouTube session I found this company called Contingency Medical.

They offer emergency medications for people that are traveling, outdoors, and for disaster planning.

Now keep in mind that the antibiotics have an expiration date, and this one I truly follow due to the efficacy, but I just thought HOW COOL IS THIS?

They sell multiple packs that can be mailed to you and include nausea medications, antibiotics of different classes, motion sickness medications … it depends on the pack you select.

I decided I would become an ambassador of this company because THIS is something I can get behind.

You fill out an intake form, their physicians review it, and then a licensed pharmacy mails you the “pack”.

As of now, I am waiting on mine to get here but I will make sure and update with a short video so you can see what it looks like when it does.

Is this a good option? It depends on your situation.

Remember, some people can get their medications for $4.00, sure, but its the money spent getting to the doctor or getting the doctor to write the medications in the first place.

If you are traveling or live in a more rural area, this could be a great option that would save you time and money.

I will be adding mine to the hurricane supply stash at our Florida home because YES there was an instance where I could not use my pharmacy due to flooding and that is something I never want to experience again.


Other than checking the weekly ads at your local pharmacy and grocery stores, there are a few other ways to save on over the counter (non-prescription) medications or support devices.

One option is to check with your health insurance first!

Some plans have a “secret” monthly allowance per household of a set amount that you can spend through them.

I used one of these through Sunshine health and had $25 a month that I could spend.

I used this for alcohol pads, gauze for surgery, bandaids, a blood pressure cuff, medicated dandruff shampoo… I mean the lists were endless…

No, it wasn’t enough for my monthly expenses, but YES ever little bit helps!

There are the FSA(flexible spending account) or HSA(health savings account) or HRA (health reimbursement account) options too.

If you have an FSA or HSA account through your insurance, you can also use this for OTC products like ankle braces, antacids, vitamins… again, this list is going to differ based on your insurance.

Now this gets a little complicated, but this is usually an employee benefit through your insurance company.

The best idea to find out the specifics would be to give your insurance company a call and ask if they offer this and to see if it is right for your family.

I say this because I have heard both positive and negative feedback using these services, and I have never personally used them so cannot speak on it in depth.


Usually I have had what I need covered under insurance plans or the military establishments we have used in my home when it comes to supportive devices.

Recently, I purchased a cane for around $15.00 on sale through Amazon and knee braces for around $9.00 a piece.

If you have insurance, I feel like it will be cheaper using a doctor’s order to obtain this equipment most of the time.

They refer to it as Durable Medical Equipment (DMEs).

If this is not an option, I learned there are DME companies that you can search for. Some are online and some are in person.

Search DME (durable medical equipment) store near me.

I just learned that does more than medications, and I could have probably saved even more money if I would have used their card to get a 50% discount on these products.

They cover shower chairs, nebulizers, footwear, wheelchairs, grab bars, and other helpful supportive devices.

And if you have ZERO dollars to spend on these, it can be helpful to check at senior citizen facilities or places where they provide them assistance.

Again, I live in Florida so those are pretty common throughout the state due to the increase number of elderly individuals that reside here.

I do know that churches, local VFW’s (for veterans), and city offices can either provide donated equipment or provide some more information for you.

I know, you may not be old enough to qualify for senior services, but a lot of times that is where the information lives for the chronic illness community when it comes to these type of assistance programs.

Of course Saturday morning yard sales or Goodwill trips may have treasures, but who is driving around searching with these gas prices?


So there are two sides to this part of the discussion and I want to preface this with, always take internet advice with a grain of salt.

Check for yourself, ask your medical professionals that know you and your chronic illness and limitations, and ALWAYS challenge things that sound “too good to be true”.

We live in a time where unfortunately certain people will use your medical condition to make a buck.

I CAN share ways that I wasted my money in the past though, and maybe you can relate?

Supplements… oh the supplements.

Are they necessary? Sometimes they truly are!

But ask yourself this… are you absorbing the supplement? Are you measuring the positive outcomes of the supplementation? Are you seeing improvements or maintaining levels that need to be maintained?

I don’t want to dive down the FDA regulated rabbit hole here or bash companies that are clearly selling placebo styled products, but I DO want to mention that it is a good thing to rectify your medications (including the supplements) from time to time.

Here is an example.

I took vitamin D for about two years. Did my levels improve? NOPE.

When I stopped taking it because I couldn’t afford to, did it decrease? NOPE.

Come to find out I wasn’t absorbing the medication at all due to other health issues.

I then learned that there were other factors like taking D2 versus D3, improving my gut health, how vitamin D is actually absorbed/produced… lots of things…

My point is that I was handing over the 20 bucks a month for absolutely nothing.

Now, obviously I needed to correct my vitamin D and supplementation was needed in this scenario. BUT purchasing a random supplement and expecting it to work miracles? Not smart of me.

Check your meds. Check your supplements.

I am a firm believer that even if we need something for long term use, that was not what the medication was usually intended for, so it’s important to decide if it is still providing optimal relief or solving an issue we have.

Your treatment plan can change... it's okay for that to happen. What once worked may not always work.

This brings me to BLOODWORK.

Did I need my vitamin D levels checked every single time I went to my primary care?

Well, my old PCP thought so.

$200 out of pocket for me to have this lab ran each time was REALLY hurting my wallet.

After finally finding the best PCM I could have ever asked for, we discussed what EXACT bloodwork would be covered and the costs associated with it.

An example of saving here was that my neuromuscular specialist, pain management, endocrinologist, cardiologist, and neurologist were all running bloodwork at the same time in the same month.

Do you know how many times my WBC were checked?

The solution here (thanks to my PCM) was to let them know what labs were being drawn from other physicians in that 30 day window.

Most of the time if it is that recent, they will accept it.

I understand some bloodwork needs to be drawn multiple times, that’s not what I am referring to, and if you don’t know which those are… ask.

Seriously, I never thought to even ask until the bills rolled in.


This is not an inclusive list of ways to save money, but my fingers sure are tired.

Sometimes we only think of the costs associated with prescription medications and copays to medical visits, but these chronic illnesses cause an increase in so many areas financially.

And if you cannot work because of your chronic illness, this becomes a very difficult burden all in itself.

I have tried so hard to cut costs on household things by waiting on sales and stocking up, or joining the gas club memberships for savings to travel to appointments, or even getting over the need to carry a designer handbag… yeah… that was the old me…

I know how stressful it can be to even look for solutions and when brain fog hits it feels IMPOSSIBLE at times… I get that…

In the future I will make sure to make a video on what the community has said for ways they have saved money in general and add an extra post recapping those answers.

For now, I hope this was helpful and could provide at least some ideas of ways to lessen the financial stressors that are caused by living with a chronic illness.

I think what matters most is that we are all very careful in the decisions we make when choosing treatments for our health.

Finding out where the information/research comes from, checking the safety of the products, and understanding our conditions are NOT usually referenced in the general information that is given out to the public can save us some money and grief.

Have you found any ways to save money? Let me know!

Thank you for sharing your non-flaring time with me!

I hope you have a better kind of day today!

Lexie - The C Spot

Disclaimer: This website does not offer any medical advice. If you are having a medical emergency, please seek the appropriate resources or services in your area. I no longer hold a medical license. Some links included may be affiliate links. For more information please see the terms and conditions located on

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