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What to Do When You Can’t Pay for Your Migraine Meds

Posted by Migraine Relief Center on Sep 26, 2014 7:00:00 AM

The economic toll of migraines is often mentioned in terms of labor productivity; for example, the Migraine Research Foundation explains that more than 100 million work days are lost in the United States each year due to employees taking time off to recover from migraine episodes. What about the financial strain that migraine patients must deal with as a result of their condition?

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Beautiful woman by Pedro Ribeiro Simoes / CC BY 2.0

Most physicians who specialize in treating migraines recommend medication-based regimens to their patients. This pharmaceutical approach to treating migraines comes at a great financial cost, particularly for patients who cannot afford the high monthly payments of health insurance plans that feature comprehensive coverage, low deductibles and prescription drug benefits.

Migraine patients who can no longer afford their preventative or abortive medications should not despair. Financial assistance and sensible treatment options are available to patients who take time to research them.

When Health Insurance Runs Out

Paying full price for medications is not within reach of the average migraine patient. Under the Affordable Care Act, patients in the United States now have a greater range of affordable insurance options; nonetheless, there will always be situations when money becomes tight.

Medicaid assistance is not limited to helping those who are completely destitute. Partial prescription assistance may be available to patients who are already spending a significant portion of their household income on medications.

Migraine patients who enjoy medical insurance are not typically aware of free clinics in their communities until they run out of insurance. In the United States, social services organizations provide information about these affordable health services. Although most free clinics do not actually provide prescription discounts, they will give free medication samples when they are available.

Some physicians are able to help their patients by introducing them prescription assistance programs offered directly by pharmaceutical firms. The application process for these programs tends to be far less bureaucratic in comparison to Medicaid coverage, and many pharmaceutical firms are known to provide eligible patients with free supplies for months at a time.

Cutting down on Expenses Temporarily

When the loss of health insurance is related to employment, it tends to be a temporary situation. Migraine patients who need more cash in their pockets until they get another job may still be able to cover their prescriptions with the money they are able to save by cutting down on expenses such as:
  • Cable television plans
  • Mobile phone plans
  • Broadband Internet plans
  • Entertainment such as movies, dancing, amusement parks, etc.
  • Dining out

Most families are not aware of just how much they spend each month on the items above until they decide to take a close look at the hard figures. Most of the time, there is no need to completely eliminate the expense; for example, opting for basic cable and reduced broadband Internet speeds can nearly save $100 per month. The same goes for wireless voice and data plans; they can be reduced instead of being completely cut out.

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