With living through a pandemic and the economical effects of it, I’m exploring the cost of medication and the stress it may cause.

The average American spends about $1200 per year on prescription drugs.  I have to do it about once a month. But, I do it without ever thinking about it. I just go, do what I need to do, and leave, and that`s that. I don`t ever pay attention to it. This time, I was practicing being present. Rather than allowing my mind to explore never-ending thoughts and anxieties, I paid attention to where I was, and focused on what I was doing.

`Pick up for Natasha.` I said to the lady.

The lady, the cashier turned and reached into a bin and pulled out a small white paper bag. She looked at the tag, scanned it, and said $19.76. I was very surprised. I asked her if that was with the insurance coverage. We had been having some troubles with my insurance company, so I thought maybe I had hit my maximum for the year or something, and they were no longer covering prescriptions for me.

Yes. That was with the insurance. Which meant that without the insurance it would have been about $100.00.

The week prior I had gone to pick up my other medication and it came to $15.00, which would have meant that without the insurance it would have been about $80.00. Which means, in total, if I didn`t have insurance those two medications alone would cost me $180.00. That is not including my Iron pills because I am anemic. It does not include Vitamin D which I taken on recommendation from my doctor.

An orange medication bottle lay open on a surface and capsules/pills falling out.

So, all in all, it would be over $200.00 to have what I need to function at a level state of mind.

To lead a full, and healthy life for one month, to not feel so down that I want to not get out of bed, to not have suicidal thoughts, to not feel so discouraged or empty and to be able to get up and out of bed and have some motivation for living life. This would cost me over $200.00. Every single month.

This feels so unbearably unfair to me. I am lucky and have insurance which covers the majority of it. But, what if I didn`t? I am not sure my family could afford that extra $200.00, without taking away from something else. Raising a family, as I am sure many of you know, is EXPENSIVE. Kids always need something. Someone is outgrowing something, or there is some event going on at school and they need an incredibly SPECIFIC shirt. There is always something. So, spending $200.00 on medication just wouldn`t be very high on the list of things to spend money on each month.

I am sure for a lot of people it is like this. The cold, harsh, reality of how expensive medications are, and they can be, hits a lot of people like a storm. Making choices like, buying milk, or buying medication? See, medication should be viewed as equally important as food for someone living with mental illness. We need it in order to be okay. In order to be at our best. Sadly, it can be too much of a financial burden for many that it has to be overlooked.

The cost to be okay is far too high.

I know that pharmaceutical companies need to make money, and that is just how the world works. But, I just find it so sad that so many people go without what they need due to cost. It just doesn`t seem fair.

A typewriter like font reads on a grey ombre background - We all deserve a fair shot at life. Emphasizing that medication should not be causing poverty.

We all deserve a fair shot at life. Some of us live with an illness that knocks us down. Some get knocked down all the way, and some maybe just a bit. None the less, we get knocked down. We deserve a fair chance. If medication is what gives you the fair chance it should be easier to access.

I think this needs to be explored better. I think the world needs to change still. It has changed a lot, and mental health is slowing becoming a regular part of conversations, but we still have a long way to go. There needs to be better access to medications for those who need it but can not financially afford it. They should not ever have to go without. We need to breath in order to live, for those who need medication, they need it in order to live well.

This needs to change. We all need a fair shot. Life is hard enough.

Medications, and being able to afford them, shouldn’t be a stress.

The cost to function shouldn`t be a stress.
These things that are often taken for granted, just should not be a stress.
They should not be hard choices people have to choose between. We all have a right to be okay. We all have a right to do what we need to do to be okay. If medication is recommended, then it should be simple to access, and affordable. And if someone can`t afford anything, then it shouldn`t mean they don`t get it. It has to be about more than just money at some point.

What about quality of life?

There needs to be funding and help for those who require it, and not make the qualification process so difficult that people fall between the cracks.

The cost to be okay is far too high.
What are your thoughts on the cost of being okay?


P.S. If you’re interested in reading about what the government is doing to protect Canadians from excessive prescription costs check out this article – Protecting Canadians From Excessive Drug Pricing

Another great read surrounding spending on prescription drugs is – Prescribed Drug Spending In Canada

“My eyes would, of course, open, but it was rare that I really saw anything. I was in a trance, and the best I could hope for was for one more breath. The chance to rise from my sleep just one more time. I remember I’d wonder if I’d ever want to live. I’d wonder if I’d ever have a happy future. It felt like I was a ticking time bomb as my path led me to suicide, my inevitable end. It’s estimated that between 25 and 60% of people with Bipolar Disorder will attempt suicide and between 4 and 19% will complete suicide.”  – – – Continue Reading

“Food made by someone else tastes better, even if you follow the same recipe.

I’m thinking the logic comes from the effort you put in to create the meal, and I totally agree with this. Preparing a meal can be a lot of work, and effort and sometimes, by the time I get to sit down to eat it, my mood likely affects the taste. (Or, how I perceive the taste.)” – – – Continue Reading


6 thoughts on “Understanding The Cost And It’s Effects About Medication

  1. This post is top notch, so many truths that need to be brought to surface. I try to create alternatives for my clients to recover without medication, but some people need and don't have any other way to cope besides taking medication. It's very, very costly, and I hope things change in a very near future!

  2. Being from the UK and having the privilege of free prescriptions, I honestly think this is disgusting. To have to pay so much just to be mentally stable and well enough to live your daily life is appalling.

    Thank you for writing about this and educating us all. Health care is something that needs discussed more often, especially it's affordability for those who aren't on six figures.

    – Nyxie

  3. Wow that's unbelievable, I'm glad you have access to them but it's terrible so many don't. I'm so thankful to live somewhere I don't need to worry about that (currently, anyway) but it makes you realise how lucky you are. I hope something changes soon xx

  4. I am very lucky in England the NHS is free and prescriptions are capped. It is far too high, it isn't fair at all. Drug companies need to stop thinking about money and think more of the wellfare of others.
    Thank you for sharing with us.

  5. Your post was very informative! I do think that the cost is way too high because everyone do not have the means to be able to afford these medications. I do agree with you that there should be some type of funding to help with the price of these medications.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.