Despite the US inflation rate holding steady at 1% and prescription drug provisions in many Affordable Care Act insurance policies, prescription drug costs have risen by 10% in the last 12 months. Nearly 17% of total US healthcare costs are spent on prescription medications. While most of these increases are modest, some price hikes have been shocking. Most infamously, the toxoplasmosis drug, pyrimethamine, literally increased in price 5000% overnight. Many accused the CEO Martin Shkreli of Turing Pharmaceuticals, the company that makes pyrimethamine, of pure greed. But even Martin Shkreli couldn’t stomach the 545% increase in the price of EpiPen over the last few years calling that drug’s manufacturers, “vultures”. The prices of many generics are skyrocketing as well; the price of doxycycline increased from 6 cents to $3.36 per pill from 2012-2013.
Not surprisingly, data from the CDC shows that 1 in 10 Americans cannot afford to fill their prescriptions. Previously here on iMedicalApps, we reviewed an app called GoodRx which is designed to help patients find the lowest price prescription by comparing prices at local pharmacies.
Now GoodRx has released a version of their medical app for prescribers called GoodRx Doctors. The new medical app uses the same information on drug prices and discounts in the patient app, GoodRx, and embeds it into a drug guide that allows providers to quickly email or text patients the best prices on a particular medication. By providing discounts up to 80% off, the makers of GoodRx Doctors aim to decrease the number of unfilled prescriptions and improve overall medication compliance.
Video Review of the GoodRx Doctors medical app
Evidence based medicine
The GoodRx Doctors app contains a fully functional drug guide that providers can use at the point of care similar to Epocrates, MicroMedex or Lexi-comp. However, the primary focus of the app is finding, and providing patients, the lowest prescription drug prices in their geographic area.
What providers would benefit from the GoodRx Doctors Medical App?
Physicians of any specialty including Physician Assistants and NPs who are caring for patients either without insurance or who have high-copays and are willing to comparison shop for the best drug prices.
Disclaimer: The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government.
- Ability to lookup virtually any medication price based on zip code.
- Email or text discount information to patient’s mobile device.
- Includes “free” built in drug guide.
- Available for Android.
- Does not contain much information on how/why the discount process works.
- Most prescriptions require a discount card of some form or a subscription at that pharmacy.
- Included drug guide not as robust as Lexi-comp or Epocrates.
GoodRx Doctors could be a game changer if embraced by providers and patients seeking the lowest prescription drug prices. The medical app works as advertised and provides modest discounts even on generic medications. Only providers like me with closed formularies and “free” government medications may find the app less useful.
- Overall Score
- User Interface
Easy to use, informative with the added benefit of a decent drug guide built-in.
- Multimedia Usage
GoodRx Doctors is intuitive, fast and emails or texts the drug pricing information right to the patient’s mobile device.
The medical app is free.
- Real World Applicability
Although I may not use this app as much as some since I am in the military, most providers have patients who truly cannot afford their medications and fail to fill or refill medications due to high drug prices. GoodRx Doctors simplifies the process of helping patients find the lowest cost prescriptions and either emails or texts the information right to their mobile device. I would think providers could easily use this medical app multiple times per day or shift.
- Device Used For Review
iPhone 6S running iOS 9.3.3
- Available for DownloadAndroidiPhoneiPad