Do you stockpile meds?

In the US under my insurance you can usually get meds refilled about 3 days earlier than the full month that they are covered. This allows me to create a med stockpile month upon month when those three days earlier to pickup are multiplied times twelve over the course of the year. I also tend to keep at an old prescription dosage amount even if that dosage has been changed/reduced. To explain, say my doctor originally prescribed me with 500 mg of Clozapine and then over time I reduced to 350 mg. My doctor keeps the prescription at the higher level in case I need to go back up.

The result? I tend to stockpile meds which drives my husband crazy. But for me it means being ready for a sudden trip out of town or having meds in place when I am on summer vacation. My insurance does not do vacation overrides. Not sure why. So if I need meds filled during vacation I need to use GoodRX coupons the week prior to leaving town. GoodRX allows you to fill prescriptions with a discount and they do not care whether your insurance says it’s time to fill or not. It used to be that my pharmacy would do a vacation override but I think the problem is with my current insurance.

I have also been told that you can ask your doctor to send the prescription to a pharmacy out of town (where you’ll be vacationing) and that that pharmacy will fill the prescription. But I have also been told that that fill is up to the pharmacist’s discretion. Don’t want to wait until I am out of town and have run out of meds for that to happen!

So, what do you to to be sure you have meds before vacation or before traveling in general? Do you have a stockpile like me? Does your insurance do vacation overrides? I have been told that even if you can get a vacation override it is only for once in the calendar year. Are you blessed to have universal healthcare that doesn’t penalize you for filling early? Or do you use something like GoodRX to get a prescription fill a little early before you have to leave for out of town and use that coupon for filling the med outside of insurance approval windows?

10 thoughts on “Do you stockpile meds?

  1. No such luck for me. Where I live it’s done based on the company that provides the health insurance/card. One company allowed for it to be done when the covid lockdown started and continued ever since. But if given the chance I live having medication to cover at least three months.

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  2. When I don’t have meds available, that’s a problem, so I try to keep as much on hand as I can in case I ever have issues getting a prescription or getting it filled. My meds are paid for by a government plan that covers low-income crazy people who’ve been hospitalized or are at risk of being hospitalized, and under that plan I can get up to 3 months of meds at a time. How early I can get them refilled depends on the duration of each fill, but for a one month fill, it’s about the same as for you, I can get it a few days early.

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  3. I’m in Canada. Universal healthcare and some prescription coverage (after a certain dollar amount is reached per calendar year on some medications). My meds can be expensive, so I tend to stockpile extra when I have it.

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    1. Thanks for sharing about that. I would have thought that with your universal health system in Canada meds would be more reasonably priced. In the US meds that have been around for ten or so years are fairly reasonable. The newest meds however aren’t typically covered by many health insurance companies. When shopping for health insurance you have to check the Formulary for that drug and see if it’s covered. Sometimes there are limit restrictions for the newer drugs. It is somewhat of a crapshoot knowing in the previous November/December what meds you will need covered if you are still working with a doc on changing your med regimine.

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  4. I am currently thinking about switching Clozapine for Loxapine. Because Loxapine has been around for a long while my insurance will cover this. But if my doctor wants me to try a new-fangled med, it likely will not be covered.

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  5. I stockpile, just as you do. Even though I am blessed to live in a country where I can fill my prescription anywhere in the country. It’s all registered at an online database that covers the entire country. I don’t travel much outside of the country, but if I am, I just tell my doctor and he’ll prescribe extra before I leave. We request our prescriptions online most of the time. And we don’t need insurance for health care in Norway.
    Still I have 3 big boxes filled with medicine. Some that is currently in use and some that I used to be on. I have no idea why I keep them, I just do…

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