Put Money Back in Your Pocket: Tips for Saving Your Health Care Dollars

By Karen Doss Bowman

Pause Magazine

Many Americans are feeling the pinch of high health care costs these days, especially those living with chronic diseases. For Cheryl Plank of Harrisonburg, VA, finding ways to cut health care costs has become a personal quest.

The 54-year-old has two chronic conditions—multiple sclerosis (MS) and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS)—that require her to make frequent doctor’s visits, undergo testing, and take numerous medications.

But Plank, who currently takes five prescription drugs daily, has found some simple ways to save money. Several years ago, for example, when her doctor prescribed expensive daily injections to slow down the progression ofher MS, she did a little research and learned that the drug’s manufacturer offered discounts—even to insured patients.

“Part of my mission is to learn as I go—to educate myself and not rely on my physicians’ advice alone,” Plank says. “It’s a cooperative effort between my physicians and me. To know your body well, to be a partner with your

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