GoodRx is a web-based company that offers patients the opportunity to compare medication prices from multiple pharmacies in a convenient and efficient manner. Recently, one of Medgadget editors, Ronney Shantouf, had the opportunity to pick the brain of GoodRx’s CEO Doug Hirsch to learn a little more about the company and all it has to offer.
Ronney Shantouf, Medgadget: Can you briefly explain what is GoodRx to our readers?
Doug Hirsch: Most Americans have no idea that prescription prices vary wildly from pharmacy to pharmacy. We take our prescriptions to the most convenient pharmacy because we’ve never had the ability to compare prices on our medications.
GoodRx provides price transparency for prescription drugs. First, we gather billions of prices for thousands of drugs at virtually every pharmacy in the US, as well as manufacturer coupons, pharmacy discounts and savings tips. Then, we put all this information into a simple web and mobile interface and provide patients with everything they need to get the lowest price at their local pharmacies.
Using GoodRx, both insured and uninsured patients can save up to 80% off the cost of their drugs.
Medgadget: How is the company able to extract pricing data from multiple companies and provide coupon options?
Doug Hirsch: GoodRx gathers data from a wide variety of sources on an ongoing basis, including pharmacies that send us prices directly, government data and published pharmacy information. We actively check our prices, and our data is updated in real-time. GoodRx coupons have been used successfully hundreds of thousands of times in pharmacies across the US over the last 12 months.
Medgadget: What does the website and app provide above and beyond a medication pricing search engine?
Doug Hirsch: GoodRx provides much more than just prices. In many cases, we provide actual discount coupons so that a consumer can receive up to 80% off by simply printing the information or showing their phone to the pharmacist. We also provide class and condition drug comparison information, so that a consumer can compare their drug by both cost and popularity relative to other similar drugs. We also offer a pharmacy locator, a pill identifier product to help consumers manage their medications and price alerts.
We also offer solutions for other players in the healthcare ecosystem – including doctors, employers, organizations or any other entity that wants to control healthcare costs for both the organization and its members. GoodRx is actively helping a number of organizations to empower their members with an exciting new benefit that members love.
Medgadget: Who will benefit the most from such a website? For the patient with insurance how does GoodRx help?
Doug Hirsch: When we originally conceived GoodRx, we thought that we would serve a primarily uninsured audience, as we thought that insurance provided both coverage and consistent pricing across pharmacies.
It turns out that insurance, while valuable, leaves many gaps where GoodRx can help.
Many employers are turning to HDHPs (high deductible health plans), which empower the insured consumer to make more educated health decisions. In addition, many insurers and Medicare plans are reducing their formularies (the drugs they cover) or imposing onerous prior authorizations or quantity limits. Lastly, generic drugs have become so inexpensive that many drugs can be purchased for less than one’s co-pay – in fact, a major pharmacy chain gives away generic Lipitor for free!
GoodRx offers co-pay pricing information for all Medicare Part D and Advantage plans and we are working with select plans to provide co-pay pricing for comparison.
Medgadget: What is the future direction of the company?
Doug Hirsch: Our goal is to provide Americans with convenient, affordable prescription drugs. Health care has become so convoluted and confusing; we’re trying to simplify the process and empower consumers to make the right choices for both their health and their wallet.
Link: GoodRx homepage…