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Runaway Health Care Costs: 12 Ways You Can Rein Them in, from the Harvard Health Letter
Date:3/5/2009

e. If he or she doesn't know what's going on, it can lead to wasteful--and possibly harmful--overtesting and duplication of treatments.

Go generic. Generic drugs cost less than their brand-name equivalents. Also, most insurers have higher co-pays for brand-name drugs. Check with your doctor about generic options.

Fight inertia. If you're taking a medication, discuss with your physician how long you've been taking it, whether it's working, and, if it isn't, not taking it anymore.

Question the need for expensive tests. Don't push to get new, expensive tests just because you think new is better. If your doctor orders an expensive test like an MRI or CT scan, ask why it's necessary and how it will make a difference.

Stay healthy. Quit smoking, eat right, exercise, and get enough sleep. You'll reduce your risk for conditions that require medical care.

Read Full-length Article: To read the full length article "12 ways to cut health care costs," click here.

Also in this issue:

  • Adult vaccine guidelines
  • CT radiation risk
  • Abdominal fat and dementia
  • What causes pulmonary embolisms?

The Harvard Health Letter is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $29 per year. Subscribe at www.health.harvard.edu/health or by calling 877-649-9457 (
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