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HEALTHCARE


FOCUS ON HEALTH ECONOMICS

Today, controlling your healthcare costs is more important than ever. As we all know, medical bills can mount up quickly even after relatively mild illnesses, and the costs of treatment for serious and/or chronic illnesses can literally bankrupt some individuals. The best ways to control healthcare costs is by doing what you can to prevent illnesses and by becoming a wise consumer.

The following are some simple steps you can incorporate into your life to maximize your chances of staying healthy, preventing diseases, and controlling your healthcare costs:

  • Learn more about Health Economics by attending our free, half-day Staying Healthy Together workshops
  • Talk to your doctor to make sure you undergo health screenings that are appropriate for your age, gender, and risk factors
  • Money-saving tips on purchasing prescription drugs and eyeglass frames

RECOMMENDED SCHEDULE FOR HEALTH SCREENINGS

According to the Mayo Clinic, the following are general guidelines on screenings for healthy men and women. Please note that these are only general guidelines; the specific screenings you should receive depend on a variety of factors, including your personal health history, age, and family medical history. It is important to talk with your doctor about the screenings you need and when you should have them.

Test What When
Blood Pressure Check Checks pressure in heart and arteries and notes risk for heart attack, stroke, heart failure, and/or kidney damage At least during each preventive care visit or as recommended by your doctor
Body Measurement Checks height, weight, waist, and body mass index At least during each preventive care visit or as recommended by your doctor
Cholesterol Test Checks total cholesterol level and looks for any buildup that could lead to heart attack or stroke At least every five years or as suggested by your doctor

NOTE: Consult with your healthcare provider regarding medical matters; LACERA does not offer medical advice.

MONEY-SAVING TIPS ON VISION COSTS

A little shopping can go a long way when it comes to purchasing eyeglass frames:

  • The markup on frames is usually high, which often results in larger stores and chains running sales and other types of promotions.
  • Generally, large stores and optical chains stock a large selection of frames at better prices than doctors' offices and boutiques.
  • If you're set on getting the latest designer frame from your neighborhood boutique, ask about coupons or seasonal sales.

LOWER YOUR COSTS ON PRESCRIPTION DRUGS

  • Check to see if there is a generic version of the brand name drug your doctor prescribed. If there is, ask your doctor to prescribe a generic drug to lower your prescription costs.
  • Compare prescription drug prices from pharmacy to pharmacy; prices often vary significantly.
  • If your medical plan includes a mail-order pharmacy, check the potential savings of ordering a 90-day supply and having it mailed directly to your home.

Subscribers in LACERA-administered Anthem Blue Cross Plans I, II, or III may receive additional discounts by showing their Caremark ID card at participating pharmacies. For questions on your ID card, call Anthem Blue Cross.

3/1/16