National Consumer Protection Week Announcement # 6:
Smart Consumer Tip: Before Buying Medication, Compare Prices at NJ Division of Consumer Affairs' Prescription Drug Price Registry
NEWARK - Prescription drug prices can vary as much as $60 per unit from one New Jersey pharmacy to the next, depending on the specific drug and other factors.
To educate the public during National Consumer Protection Week, and to help consumers make the most of every dollar, the State Division of Consumer Affairs today reminds consumers of an important online resource: New Jersey's Prescription Drug Price Registry.
The Registry, at www.NJDrugPrices.nj.gov, maintained by the Division of Consumer Affairs, lets consumers compare the prices offered at different pharmacies for the 150 most frequently prescribed drugs. The website allows consumers to input the prescribed medication and dosage type, and their town name or ZIP code, for a list of the prices offered by specific pharmacies in their area.
"New Jersey's Prescription Drug Price Registry is an easy-to-use resource, in English and Spanish, that can put hundreds of dollars back into consumers' pockets. Medication is expensive, but the Division of Consumer Affairs is doing what it can to help consumers take care of their health and their bank accounts," Thomas R. Calcagni, Acting Director of the State Division of Consumer Affairs, said.
Consumers buying prescription medications – especially if they are buying from more than one pharmacy – should always communicate with the pharmacist about their medical condition and the full list of drugs they are taking. Failure to communicate with the pharmacist may result in purchasing drugs that are not compatible with each other or with the patient's health.
The Division of Consumer Affairs updates the Prescription Drug Price Registry each week, from claims that licensed New Jersey pharmacies submit to the State Department of Human Services, Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services regarding their "usual and customary" prices.
Actual prices charged may vary from those listed on the Registry website. While using the Registry to make informed shopping decisions, consumers should call or visit their pharmacy to learn the current price before buying.
NATIONAL CONSUMER PROTECTION WEEK (NCPW) is a coordinated campaign that encourages consumers nationwide to take full advantage of their consumer rights and make better-informed decisions. NCPW 2011 takes place March 6 through 12, 2011.
More information designed to help consumers protect themselves is offered free of charge at the State Division of Consumer Affairs NCPW website at www.NJConsumerAffairs.gov. Information is also available at the official National Consumer Awareness Week website, www.NCPW.gov.
Consumers who believe they have been cheated or scammed by a business, or suspect any other form of consumer abuse, can file a complaint with the State Division of Consumer Affairs by visiting its website, www.NJConsumerAffairs.gov, or by calling 1-800-242-5846 (toll free within New Jersey) or 973-504-6200.