Elsewhere on this site I mentioned that under our New and Improved Insurance Plan one of my monthly maintenance drugs is going to double in price, from $30 to $60. The actual price of the drug, of course, isn't changing at all: what is changing is the amount the insurance weasels are willing to fork over for it.

As it happens, the pharmacy I use discloses their regular retail price somewhere on the ticket, and this particular drug sells for $65.33 for the usual 30-day supply. With a $60 copay, this means that CFI Care [not its real initials] will be putting up a whole five dollars and thirty-three cents.

The argument is made, of course, that there are less-expensive drugs out there, and no doubt there are. I used to take rather a lot of them. Then I found something that worked consistently with minimal side effects, and I stuck to it. Over the years, it has come down somewhat in price: a pharmacy I used to use on the east side charged $103 for it, but that was four years ago.

I have noticed that of the six drugs I am more or less regularly prescribed, five are presently available in generic form, and three of them are available on both Wal-Mart's and Target's $4 prescription lists. [Both links go to PDF files.] What I can't find out online, however, is how much they'd charge for the other three prescriptions — and whether they might have that one $60-ish drug for less than sixty dollars.

Now this is a group package in which I'm enrolled; I can't cherry-pick through it and select the coverages I want and deselect the coverages I don't want. (And if I could, what are the chances that my employer, who currently writes the check for the entire annual premium, would kick back any savings to me? Yeah, that's what I thought.) On the other hand, not turning in a $80 $110 claim every month might help ward off the apparently-inevit