The Ennis Daily News (Ennis, Tex.), Ed. 1 Wednesday, July 18, 2012 Page: 3 of 8
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Wednesday, July 18,2012 - Ennis Daily News - Page 3
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• Most cosmetic & general dental treatments
available in our office
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terior Painting & Renovation - Interior Painting & Remodeling
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ffe accept: Medicare - Medicaid - Medicaid Fending - (M Contract - Private Pay - insurance
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ENNIS CHIROPRACTIC 6
WELLNESS CENTER, P.A.
DR. WILLIAM C. DAVIS, D.C.
Most Insurances ■ PIP * Attorney’s Letter of Protection
Jr test |
within Ennis city limits
• Fast & friendly service!
(Average iVait time 5-/5 min J
* Accepting all major insurances
including Express Scripts,
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Medicare Part D plans
• Wide selection of over the counter products
718 W. Lampasas
972-875-6521 * 972-878-3784
” E3 HOURS: MON-FRI: 9AM GPM • SAT: 9AM 1PM
Medication management key
Prescription and non-prescrip-
tion medications have made our
lives better in many ways. While
these medications may be very im-
portant for good health, they may
also have unintended
side effects that might
cause problems in the
body Additionally, the
more medications a per-
son takes, the greater
risk for medications in-
teracting with each
other in a bad way This
becomes a problem as
people grow older since,
on average, older adults
are prescribed more
medications than any
other age group.
Being able to safely manage your
medications involves understand-
ing some about drugs, and how to
talk to your doctor, pharmacist and
other health providers who might
Medicines that may be bought
without a prescription are called
over-the-counter medicines. This
means that the Food and Drug Ad-
ministration has deemed these safe
to take without a doctor’s written
order. However, mixing certain med-
icines can cause problems, so be
sure to let your doctor know about
all the prescription and over-the-
counter drugs you are taking. Just
because it is safe enough to be sold
over-the-counter does not mean it is
completely safe for you to take.
When getting a prescription
filled, there may be a choice be-
tween either generic or brand-name
drug. Generic and brand-name med-
icines are alike because they act the
same way in the body and they con-
tain the same active ingredients.
Generic drugs may cost
less; however, not all
drugs are available in
Tell the doctor or
nurse about all the
medicines you take
whenever a new drug is
your doctor or nurse
about your allergies
and any problems you
have had with medi-
cines. Find out the right
way to take the medi-
cine before you begin using it.
Writing down some of the ques-
tions you might want to ask will
help you have a more informative
visit to the doctor. Your questions
• What is the name of the medi-
cine and why am I taking it?
• How many times a day should I
take it and at what time?
Should I take the medicine be-
fore, after, or between meals? Is
there anything I should avoid eating
when taking this medicine?
• When should I stop taking the
• What if I miss a dose?
• What side effects can I expect?
What should I do if I have a prob-
Your pharmacist is also an im-
portant part of your healthcare
team. He or she can answer many
questions you may have about your
medicine. For example, a pharma-
cist can tell you how and when to
take your medicine, whether a drug
may interact with or affect another
medicine you are taking and any
side effects you might have. Also,
the pharmacist can answer ques-
tions about over-the-counter med-
Try to have all your prescriptions
filled at the same pharmacy so your
records are in one place. The phar-
macist will help keep track of your
medications and will be able to tell
you if a new drug might cause prob-
Make sure you can read and un-
derstand the name of the medicine
and the directions on the container
and the warning stickers on the bot-
tle. If the label is difficult to read,
ask your pharmacist to use larger
By having some additional
knowledge about terms and in-
structions, you can better manage
your medications, reducing the risk
of medication error. Also, by better
compliance with your medications
you are more likely to experience
better health while reducing your
overall healthcare costs.
For further information, contact
Rita Hodges, County Extension
Agent-Family & Consumer Sciences,
Texas AgriLife Extension Service,
701S. 1-35E, Waxahachie, or call 972-
825-5175 or e-mail:
rmhodges@ag. tamu. edu.
Marie Dyess, the
crafts instructor at
Ennis Golden Cir-
that the class mem-
bers made to the
senior citizens at
Ennis Care Center.
an’t pay your medical bills?
It’s no secret that health care costs
have been spiraling out of control for
years. To fight back, your best bet is
to be a well-informed consumer:
Know the true costs of medical pro-
cedures, supplies and
medications so you can
bargain effectively; care-
fully anticipate and
track medical expenses;
and stay on top of your
But sometimes, even
when you follow the
rules you still can get
burned. I’ve heard many
appalling stories about
people — even those
with comprehensive in-
surance — who have
been denied benefits, over-charged,
sent to collections or even forced to
file for bankruptcy because they
couldn’t pay their medical bills.
Carefully review each doctor, lab
or hospital bill and match it against
the Explanation of Benefits state-
ment that shows how much they
were reimbursed by the insurance
company Also, watch for items that
may have been charged to you by
mistake such as:
• Medications, supplies, treat-
ments or meals you didn’t receive
while hospitalized or getting an out-
• Duplicate charges for a single
procedure (such as x-rays, MRIs and
lab work), including those that had to
be redone due to a technician’s error.
• Charges for a full day’s hospital-
ization when you checked out early;
or private room rates when you
shared a suite.
The summary hospi-
tal bill you were sent
probably doesn’t con-
tain many details, so ask
for an itemized bill along
with a copy of your
medical chart and a
pharmacy ledger show-
ing which drugs you
were given during your
If you’re having diffi-
culty paying a medical
bill, don’t simply ignore
it. Like any creditor, doc-
tors and hospitals often turn unpaid
bills over to collection agencies,
which will wreak havoc with your
credit score. Contact creditors as
soon as possible, explain your situa-
tion and ask them to set up an in-
stallment payment plan or work out a
Many people with no insurance
discover that they’re often charged
much higher rates than those negoti-
ated by insurance companies,
Medicare and Medicaid. Don’t be
afraid to ask for those lower rates and
to work out a repayment plan —just
be sure to get the agreement in writ-
ing. Most doctors and hospitals
would rather accept reduced pay-
ments than have to deal with collec-
tion agencies and possibly no reim-
bursement at all.
Ask the hospital’s patient liaison
to review your case and see whether
you qualify for financial assistance
from the government, a charitable
organization or the hospital itself.
Most will forgive some or all bills for
people whose income falls below cer-
tain amounts tied to federal poverty
Also pursue this avenue with your
doctor or other provider—ideally be-
fore they’ve begun collections.
A few additional cost-savings tips:
• Ask whether your employer of-
fers flexible spending accounts,
which let you pay for eligible out-of-
poeket health care and/or dependent
care expenses on a pre-tax basis.
• Use online price-comparison
services like Healthcare Blue Book
and OutofPocket.com to research
going rates for a variety of medical
• Unless it’s a true emergency try
to avoid emergency rooms and use an
urgent care network facility affiliated
with your insurance company or ask
your doctor for recommendations.
Bottom line: Know what health
services cost and don’t be afraid to
negotiate. You’ll haggle over the price
of a car — why not your health?
Jason Alderman directs Visa’s fi-
nancial education programs. To fol-
low Jason Alderman on Twitter:
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Todaro, Nick. The Ennis Daily News (Ennis, Tex.), Ed. 1 Wednesday, July 18, 2012, newspaper, July 18, 2012; Ennis, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth772121/m1/3/: accessed November 17, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Ennis Public Library.