The world at large is moving toward more controlled access to medications. One example is the development of the Universal Drugstore. In this scenario, all OTC drugs are available in one location, regardless of where in the world the customer lives. This allows patients to Buy OTC Medication from the convenience of their own home without having to travel, worry about the possibility of police action, or fill out time-consuming forms. While there are some concerns about the safety of OTC drugs, whether they are sold alone or in a store, studies have found no evidence to suggest that increased access to OTC drugs may increase the incidence of overdose or other serious adverse drug events.
Benefits of buying OTC Medications
This seems like an obvious question, but it bears repeating. As a general rule, the more costly a pharmaceutical product is, the less it will be affordable to the average consumer. This holds for prescription medications as well as OTC medications. This is why some people go to the expense of purchasing cheaper over-the-counter medications. Still, they continue to purchase the same expensive prescriptions because they believe that the higher-priced medications are worth the price.
Costs of OTC Medications
The situation is not as simple when it comes to the cost of OTC medications. OTC costs more because they are harder to distribute. This is especially true with cheaper OTC drugs because there is no pharmacy to maintain a supply. While cheaper medications are more accessible to pharmacists per pill sold, the chain of custody for prescription medications sold through pharmacies per pill means that some generic OTC drugs are held in higher quantities than their brand-name counterparts, increasing overall costs.
A pharmacist can often make the situation more affordable by agreeing to fill a quantity at the wholesale discount rate. However, not all OTC medications are sold in this way. Some are restricted to a retail distribution network. The pharmacist must first contact the healthcare provider to obtain the active ingredients needed to fill the order.
Is this process inconvenient?
Not really. If the patient or care provider does not have a preferred pharmacy, they can choose from the list of participating pharmacies provided by each participating discount program. In this way, the patient can select one that meets their needs at a more affordable price than those associated with purchasing OTC medications from retail outlets. Furthermore, the healthcare provider will often fill the order at a much lower rate than they would charge from a retail outlet.
Are there benefits for patients who suffer from ailments associated with the common cold?
Yes, there are. Many people can benefit from the reduced cost of purchasing over-the-counter sinus medications from specialty stores. While these products are not allowed to be sold where people commonly buy their prescriptions (such as at local drug stores), many people find it convenient to purchase cold and flu medication from specialty stores that are not subject to the restrictions of pharmacies.
Does buying OTC cold and flu medications from specialty stores provide additional benefits besides the convenience of shopping from your own home? Yes, there are. Often, choose to buy OTC pain relief medication rather than from your local pharmacy. You will find that you can get a better price on some brand names, generic over-the-counter brands, and even name-brand medications imported from other countries. If you don’t mind waiting an extra day or two for your cold or flu medication to arrive at your door, and you don’t mind paying slightly more than you would at a drug store, specialty stores can offer you the ability to purchase brand names at prices that are much higher than what you can buy OTC.