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Archive for October, 2009

Five Million, Six Hundred Fifty Six Thousand – But, Who’s Counting?

October 30, 2009 By: Tylar Masters Category: H1N1 News, Medtipster

Tylar Masters

Tylar Masters

The actual number of confirmed cases of swine flu could be nearly 140 times greater than originally reported.

The swine flu has everyone talking, and everyone concerned in one way or another. It’s a topic we hear about daily in the news. The shortage of the H1N1 vaccine has sent millions into a panic, especially those with young children or caretakers of elders, who are at the highest risk.

The number of laboratory confirmed cases from April 2009 to July 2009 is approximately 44,000 in the United States alone. But what if that number is completely inaccurate? How would that effect the supply of the H1N1 vaccine now that flu season is here and we’ve entered into the “fall swing” of the swine flu? Answer: Tremendously.

The truth is that the estimate could be off just a little. Like 5,656,000, but who’s counting? Well, every single concerned American for one! According to researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Harvard School of Public Health, the actual number of infected individuals in the United States is between 1.8 million and 5.7 million. That’s up to 140 times greater than the earlier reported 44,000 infected Americans.

The CDC and Harvard suggest that “health systems and infrastructure may be unprepared in the short-term if plans are based on a number of confirmed cases.” That being said, knowing the true number of confirmed cases seems like a high priority.

Resources: Bloomberg, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Harvard School of Public Health

Tylar Masters
Manager of Marketing and Communications
Medtipster, LLC.
email: tmasters@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

New Link to Microsoft Powered H1N1 Response Center

October 29, 2009 By: Tylar Masters Category: H1N1 News, Medtipster

Tylar Masters

Tylar Masters

Helpful Link Directs Users to Microsoft Powered H1N1 Response Center

Medtipster.com has added a new feature to the website to help consumers determine if their symptoms align with seasonal flu or H1N1 swine flu. By clicking on the “Helpful Links” tab on the menu bar from any of Medtipster.com’s pages, the “Flu Self-Assessment,” licensed by Emory University, and powered by Microsoft, will walk consumers through a series of questions and will provide a suggestion as to whether the symptoms are flu-like or possibly another illness.

It’s always important to talk to your physician about your health concerns. Medtipster.com and Microsoft’s H1N1 Response Center does not provide medical advice and does not replace the advice of a healthcare professional. Medtipster.com and Microsoft cannot guarantee and is not responsible for the accuracy of the guidance for your situation. We encourage you to evaluate it carefully and take the following into consideration:

  • If you are worried about your health, call your doctor.
  • If you do not have a doctor, go to a walk-in clinic (Medtipster.com’s mini-clinic search will help you find one in your neighborhood)
  • If you think you have an emergency, call 9-1-1.

For more information on the seasonal flu or H1N1 swine flu, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at http://www.cdc.gov/.

Tylar Masters
Manager of Marketing and Communications
Medtipster, LLC.
email: tmasters@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

Trick or Treat?

October 28, 2009 By: Tylar Masters Category: Medtipster, Prescription Savings

Tylar Masters

Tylar Masters

We’ve all asked that famous Halloween question, “trick or treat?” What we expect is some foil wrapped deliciousness, some sort of taste explosion in our mouths, not a $32.00 deduction from our bank account (otherwise known as “trick” in my opinion!)

I visited my doctor the week before Halloween back in 2007 because I had a terrible cough, sore throat, chest congestion and a fever. The doctor told me I had bronchitis, and wrote a prescription. On my way out, I grabbed a mini-snickers from the plastic orange pumpkin, thank goodness, because that was the only real “treat” I got out of the deal.

I told my doctor I didn’t have prescription insurance. He advised that he could call in my prescription to the pharmacy that was directly across the street from his practice and they would have the drug available for just $4.00. I was so relieved to hear this news! I drove over to the pharmacy, waited about 25 minutes for my order to be filled, while managing to steer clear of the temptation of wandering around the store buying several things I really didn’t need.

The pharmacist called my name, and I went to the counter to pay for my prescription. “Your total is $36.00,” she said. I replied, “oh, umm, I’m sure there’s a mix up, you see, my doctor told me this would be just $4.00 here.” You know, because doctors are always right, right? “No, this is the generic and it’s $36.00,” she repeated that price as if I was automatically supposed to know my total. I had no clue, and apparently neither did my doctor, that this particular pharmacy had no such drug at that price, nor any others for that matter.

You see, each pharmacy really does have its own list of generic prescriptions available on the $4.00 program. But who knows that? I sure didn’t. And my doctor clearly did not. I didn’t know there was even a way to know which pharmacies carried which drugs on their $4.00 programs. It can be very confusing to the average consumer, which is why Medtipster.com exists.

Stick with David Copperfield for your tricks and Medtipster.com for your treats!

Just for fun, the origination of Halloween’s famous question: http://tinyurl.com/yhe77e8

Tylar Masters
Manager of Marketing and Communications
Medtipster, LLC.
email: tmasters@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

The Viral Infection of a Bad Hair Day

October 26, 2009 By: Tylar Masters Category: Medtipster, Prescription Savings

Tylar Masters

Tylar Masters

I got this new and really awesome haircut on Thursday and ladies, you know that feeling where you can’t wait to take a stab at replicating your new ‘do exactly the way your stylist did? It never tends to work out for me, but then add Friday’s humidity to the equation, and OMG*… my efforts were pointless. By noon, this so-called re-creation of my stylist’s looked more like something my cat Viktor coughed up.

I almost shared my bad-mood-as-a-direct-result-of-a-bad-hair-day with my 300+ facebook friends. But then I thought, “wait, is it really that bad?” I mean, I don’t have a cold sore, an ear infection, a bladder infection, toenail fungus, a zit with its own zip code, nope, nothing that bad. All I had was what I call “pony-tail syndrome.”

It got me thinking about how, with all the social media out there today, people are sharing information with each other and communicating like never before. I remember when my grandma would wait until Sunday to call us because Sprint had the $.10 a minute long distance on Sundays, remember? And we’d all get to hear about her corns and back pain the old fashioned way – via land line!

Everything on the internet has viral potential. But some things are better left non-viral! If I did have any of those problems I mentioned above, I wouldn’t share it with my friends! I would crawl into a cave, have my boyfriend send in food and water, and come out only when the problem is gone.

My point is this: How much personal information do your friends share with you? Do you know what prescriptions they might be taking right now, and for what? What if some of your friends are on daily medications and struggle to afford those every month? Would they tell you? For most people, it’s embarrassing to communicate about medical and/or financial problems.

Sharing is caring! Okay, except when it’s green and phlegm-like! But if you’re reading this, you’ve found a way to save on healthcare. Although everyone you know may not need it today, chances are there will be a day when they do need it. Share this with your friends today, because you never know if they will need it tomorrow.

* OMG is by far my favorite acronym to sarcastically throw into my blogs. It only works if you recite it as the letters and not what it actually stands for, throw in a head nod and speak like a high pitched valley girl. I truly hope someone finds as much humor in the sarcastic ways to use this acronym as I do.

To become a fan of Medtipster’s facebook page, follow the facebook icon on our website!

Tylar Masters
Manager of Marketing and Communications
Medtipster, LLC.
email: tmasters@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

It’s Creative, It’s Unique, It’s Going to Cost How Much?

October 23, 2009 By: Tylar Masters Category: Medtipster, Prescription Savings

Tylar Masters

Tylar Masters

Healthcare Awareness Campaigns, A Look Into the Future

Tom Brady of the New England Patriots wore pink Nike shoes during the October 4th home game versus the Baltimore Ravens. Other NFL players honored October’s Breast Cancer Awareness month by wearing pink gloves, sweatbands and using pink towels.

The shoes, in particular, interest me. DeAngelo Williams, running back for my favorite team, the Carolina Panthers, came up with the idea for the pink Nike cleats because an NFL player’s cleats are so vital to their success on the field, much like breast cancer awareness is vital to the success of finding a cure. Williams’ mother suffers from breast cancer and her three sisters have all fallen victim to the disease.

Since the dominant audience of an NFL game is male, I imagine that by adding anything to do with breasts to the mix will raise some interest. I have to say, what a fantastic offensive play by Susan Komen for the cure!

This is one example of how creating a unique campaign for raising awareness about healthcare issues is extremely effective. Other similar campaigns you’ve probably seen are American Heart Association and Campbell Soup’s Go Red for Women, walks for the different causes such as autism or diabetes, red ribbons for AIDS awareness, as well as thousands of Facebook pages for different causes like Parkinson’s Disease, Lou Gehrig’s, Multiple Sclerosis, etc.

Every awareness campaign shares one major issue in common: the need for a cure. A cure in most cases means a prescription. While pharmaceutical companies are hard at work in trials desperately trying to find a formula that will cure many illnesses, they are already dispensing formulas that will cure and/or relieve symptoms of other illnesses, such as strep throat, high cholesterol and depression. Many Americans are dependent on these drugs in their daily lives to suppress symptoms, and others are in need of these drugs when they become sick. (Have you ever tried to “wait out” a cold? It’s terrible!)

Diseases and illnesses don’t care who you are, what insurance you have, how much money you make, how much money is in your savings or retirement fund, how old you are, your gender, your status on facebook… I think you get my point. With the current state of healthcare, prescription drugs need to be affordable.

Where one awareness campaign ends, another one begins. We need to raise awareness about healthcare and prescription drug costs. Because when there finally is a cure, will we be able to afford it?

For more information on DeAngelo Williams’ breast cancer awareness foundation, visit www.deangelowilliams34.com.

Tylar Masters
Manager of Marketing and Communications
Medtipster, LLC.
email: tmasters@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

The Price is Right?

October 21, 2009 By: Tylar Masters Category: Medtipster, Prescription Savings

Tylar Masters

Tylar Masters

“Come on down!” Those are awfully familiar words to any “Price is Right” guru. Ever notice how the items being bid on are all brand names? It’s part of “branding,” and it works well if you’re targeting a fan of the CBS hit television show, even post-Bob Barker!

There’s a time and a place for brand names. I choose Kraft Macaroni and Cheese over the store brand, it’s my personal preference. Why? In my opinion, Kraft has a better product, and the difference is definitely noticeable. (Yes, it is the cheesiest!) I could save about $25 a year by choosing the store brand, which adds up to about $1,250 over my lifetime.

Now, this is crazy. The average person has one prescription per month, and the cost of the brand name prescription, on average, is $100.00. Let’s say from age 45 to age 68, a person spends this amount per month on the same brand name prescription. That’s $27,600! What? $27,600! Sorry, it was just SO worth repeating!

Now, let’s take this same person and factor in medtipster.com, where the same prescription is available in a generic form (which is an exact replica of the brand name) for only $4.00 per month. Now we’re talking! That’s just $1,104.00 over 23 years. While I’m sure you can do the math, basically the difference is, well, a new Honda Civic Hybrid, or two Kia Rios!

So you see, we’re not talking mac’n cheese any more. While “The Price is Right” for some purchases, it’s better to “come on down” on prescription drug spending.

Tylar Masters
Manager of Marketing and Communications
Medtipster, LLC.
email: tmasters@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

Welcome to Tylar Masters!

October 19, 2009 By: Jason A. Klein Category: Medtipster

Jason Klein

Jason Klein

Since January 2009, Medtipster has been providing consumers an informational source that they could functionally use to lower their prescription drug costs. Reaction to this has been fantastic and the positive press we have received is overwhelming.

To take us to the next level of media awareness, we hired Tylar Masters as our new manager of marketing/communications.

Tyler Masters

Tylar Masters

With several years of experience as a marketing executive, Tylar will use her natural creative ability to successfully promote and position Medtipster. She has handled marketing campaigns for an extremely wide variety of clients and I couldn’t be happier to welcome her to our Medtipster team! Look for her around town, on the internet, in her blog, in your office, on facebook, twitter etc… promoting our cause!

Go Tylar!

Best,

JK

Jason A. Klein
President
Medtipster, LLC.
email: jklein@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

Uninsured Numbers Rising!

October 06, 2009 By: Nadia Category: Medtipster, Prescription News

Nádia - your personal pharmacy cost adviser

Nádia - your personal pharmacy cost adviser

The number of uninsured nationwide rose to 46.3 million in 2008, up 1.3% from 45.7 million the prior year, with 15.4% of the total population uninsured, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Our goal is to provide a road map for the 15.4% that have no insurance. Medtipster.com is the best way to find medications at the right price. Whether it’s CVS Pharmacy, Kroger Pharmacy, Target Pharmacy, Kmart Pharmacy, Meijers Pharmacy, Walmart Pharmacy, Rite-Aid, Spartan Pharmacy, etc… The choice is yours! Medtipster offers the information, you do the rest.

Find your nearest Pharmacy by using medtipster.com

A&P working with ESI Medical to conduct flu shot clinics

October 06, 2009 By: Nadia Category: H1N1 News

Nádia - your personal pharmacy cost adviser

Nádia - your personal pharmacy cost adviser

The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company has partnered with ESI Medical to conduct seasonal flu and H1N1 vaccination clinics in 250 stores in six states until Dec. 23. The company also is offering a “buy one, get one free” deal on flu shots to customers who use their Club Cards to purchase $100 worth of beauty care and health products.

Find your nearest A&P Pharmacy by using medtipster.com

Free prescriptions? Really? Can’t beat FREE.

October 05, 2009 By: Jason A. Klein Category: Free Prescriptions, Medtipster

Jason Klein

Jason Klein

We at Medtipster have been monitoring the discounted generic programs offered by many of the retail chains for years now. Of course we have, it’s our business. Kroger, Target, Walmart, etc… offer $4.00 30 day supplies and $10.00 90 day supplies… Take it from a “lifer” in the Rx business, THAT’S AN AMAZING PROGRAM! We have several large employers in North Carolina that have instituted managed Rx plans on top of their current PBM / Rx program in an attempt to steer their folks to low cost generics. For more information, please contact us. We are huge fans of you BCBSNC (Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina) & would love to work with you!

Now the trend appears to be to offer FREE prescriptions. REALLY! We’re all in! Meijers in the midwest has been doing this for years and is extremely succesful. Now Stater Bros. & Albertsons are getting in the game. Kudos to you! Our goal is to get prescriptions in the hands of consumers that need them and at the right price. Sounds like that meets our criteria.

Best,

JK

Jason A. Klein
President
Medtipster, LLC.
email: jklein@medtipster.com
web address: www.medtipster.com

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