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Are Prescriptions Tax Deductible? Everything You Need to Know

high drug prices

September 6, 2022
Are Prescriptions Tax Deductible

When doing your taxes each year, you might have wondered:

Are prescriptions tax deductible?

Many prescriptions are tax-deductible in the United States. This may reduce the amount you have to pay in taxes, giving you a little extra financial wiggle room during tax season.

You may also wonder:

Can you claim prescriptions on your taxes?

Yes, you can claim prescriptions on your taxes – in certain qualifying circumstances. For example, some American families may be able to deduct medical expenses over a certain percentage of their adjusted gross income.

However, saving money on your prescriptions can go even further than a once-a-year tax break.

Here, we’ll look at the specific ways you can deduct prescriptions on your taxes and other ways you can reduce your prescription medication bills year-round.

Is Medication Tax-Deductible? Here’s What You Need to Know

If you’re new to writing off prescriptions, pay attention.

Can you claim prescriptions on your taxes? Often, yes – but you’ve got to know how to do it correctly to get the maximum benefit and avoid any unnecessary penalties. Don’t forget to check with a tax professional to get tax advice specific to your situation.

First things first:

What is the Medical Expense Deduction?

The medical expense deduction allows Americans with substantial medical bills to subtract some portion of those expenses from their taxable income. This may reduce their tax bill.

When Americans file their taxes, they report the total amount of money they brought in over the year. So the amount they owe in taxes is – very simply put – some percentage of that gross income.

There are some special circumstances in which people can claim tax deductions, or qualifying factors that can reduce the amount of their income that is subject to taxes.

By lowering your taxable income, you may lower the amount of taxes you owe.

The specific size of that benefit may change a little from year to year. In 2022, for example, taxpayers could deduct unreimbursed and qualified medical expenses larger than 7.5% of their adjusted gross income – or the amount a taxpayer brings home each year after certain expenses.

If you’re deducting prescriptions from your taxes, though, you need to know what you’re doing.

First, the benefit only covers certain expenses. These include expenses you took on during the specific taxed calendar year. Expenses only qualify if they were not covered by insurance.

Outside of those restrictions, the list of qualifying expenses is extensive.

Are Prescriptions Tax Deductible

Are Prescription Medications Tax-Deductible?

Most prescription medication costs are tax-deductible under the medical expenses deduction.

Many different types of medical purchases qualify for this tax deduction, including health-related transportation, healthcare services, and prescription drugs.

If you have unreimbursed expenses for qualifying medical goods and services, the Internal Revenue Service (or IRS) in America will allow you to deduct those expenses from your tax bill.

This will lower the amount you need to pay in taxes, allowing you to realize hidden savings from your medical expenses.

What Exactly Can You Claim Under the Medical Expense Deduction?

According to the most recent IRS publication, the following qualify as deductible medical expenses:

  • Payments to medical practitioners (including doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, chiropractors, surgeons, and dentists)
  • Fees for hospital care
  • Fees for nursing home care
  • Acupuncture services
  • Addiction or weight-loss programs, providing the relevant disorders are doctor-diagnosed
  • Prescription drugs
  • Some fees associated with medical conferences relevant to a disorder that you or someone in your family has
  • Medical devices such as wheelchairs, crutches, hearing aids, dentures, eyeglasses, or contacts
  • Some fees associated with service animals
  • Qualifying insurance premiums (e.g., if your employer doesn’t pay for long-term care)

Before you file, it’s a good idea to check the most updated list of qualifying expenses from the IRS. Running your numbers past a qualified tax advisor is never a bad idea, just to make sure that everything adds up.

It’s also a good idea to make sure that the expenses you’re claiming qualify for this tax benefit, as there are some surprising medical expenses that you can’t claim on your taxes.

Are There Medical Expenses That I Can’t Claim on my Taxes?

The following “medical” expenses cannot be claimed on your tax return:

  • Burial or funeral costs
  • Over the counter medications
  • Toiletries
  • Cosmetics
  • Vacations
  • Cosmetic surgery
Are Prescriptions Tax Deductible

How Much Can I Deduct for Prescriptions on My Taxes?

Here’s an easy way to figure out how much you can deduct for prescriptions on your taxes:

  1. First, find out your adjusted gross income (AGI) for the year in question. (This is all of your forms of income, minus some expenses such as school tuition.)
  2. Next, multiply that number by .075.
  3. Now, tally up your qualifying medical bills for that year.
  4. Finally, subtract 7.5% of your AGI – the number you got in step #2 – from your total qualifying medical bills – the number from step #3.
  5. The result is the amount you can deduct.

Let’s say that you have an adjusted gross income of $40,000. 7.5% of $40,000 is $3,000.

If you have $10,000 in qualifying medical expenses, in this situation, you can deduct the expenses over $3,000 – which means you may be able to deduct $7,000 from your taxable income.

Check the IRS for updated guidelines, as the specific amount of tax-deductible prescription medication may change slightly each year.

Do I Need to Know Any Rules About Claiming Prescriptions on My Taxes?

Taxes are complicated. If you’re wondering whether there are any rules you need to follow to claim prescriptions on your taxes – there are.

The most important rule is that you need to decide up front whether you’re taking the standard deduction or itemizing your deductions. (You can’t do both.)

Suppose you’re taking the standard deduction (or the most common, general tax deduction that most people claim on their taxes). In that case, you probably won’t be able to take the itemized medical expense deduction. (Ask your tax professional to help you weigh the pros and cons of standard vs. itemized deductions.)

What About Claiming Prescription Drugs on My Taxes for My Family?

Maybe you don’t spend more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income on your personal medical bills or prescription medications.

If you have a spouse or qualifying dependents, their medical expenses may count towards your deductible expenses. (The IRS has a simple survey that you can take to determine whether your household’s expenses qualify.)

Can You Claim Prescriptions on Your Taxes? Yes – Here’s How

Now that we’ve covered the basics, your next question may be simple: how can you claim prescriptions on your taxes?

Here’s what to do.

  1. Prepare to itemize deductions on your taxes instead of taking the standard deduction. This means you will spend more time preparing your taxes. You’ll also need clear paperwork documenting your medical expenses. If you usually prepare them yourself, this may be a reason to work with a tax professional.
  2. Go through the worksheet provided on Schedule A of the IRS tax documents. If you’re working with a tax professional or tax preparation software, you may just be able to work through a survey and answer a few questions. After completing Schedule A, you’ll know how much you can deduct.
  3. Think about your filing status. If you’re married and file jointly, you may benefit from a few tax breaks. On the other hand, if you file separately, you may be able to deduct more medical expenses. Your tax professional can help you weigh the benefits.
  4. Over-document everything. If multiple family members claim significant expenses, keep a named file for each person and a dated file for each tax return. If the IRS questions your deductions, pull paperwork to back up your math.

After you file your taxes, start to think about your strategy for next year. If you’ve put together a sound system for keeping your paperwork, maintain it – it’ll make saving money on your taxes next year much easier for you, especially if you or your family are dealing with chronic conditions.

Now may also be an excellent time to consider finding other ways you can save on your prescriptions.

For example, buying medication from an online Canadian pharmacy to achieve lower prices on mail-order prescription meds may be exactly what you need to save year-round – not just during tax season.

Are Prescriptions Tax Deductible

How to Save on Your Prescriptions Medications Year-Round

Being able to deduct prescriptions from your taxes can be a game-changer during tax season.

If your healthcare and prescription costs are considerable year-round, though, it’ll be even more powerful to find a solution that can save you money every month of the year.

Partnering with an international online pharmacy to cut back on prescription costs also comes with online-shopping perks, such as ordering medication with a few clicks and having it shipped straight to your front door.

When you purchase your meds through, you can save over 90% on the most popular (and expensive) medications which can be a substantial savings over any tax benefits you may get from buying more expensive medications in the United States and then deducting their cost on your tax return

Examples of Popular Prescription Medication Savings Through

Here are a few examples of popular medications you can easily find discounted at

  • Symbicort Turbuhaler Cost: The Symbicort Turbuhaler is a drug that can provide relief for patients suffering from COPD and asthma. Its efficacy increases its associated expenses: One Turbuhaler retails for at least $250.00 in America. Here, you can find the same brand-name Turbuhaler for approximately $100.00 – up to 60% savings.
  • Asacol Cost: Asacol, or generic mesalamine, is a drug that has a beneficial anti-inflammatory effect for people who have ulcerative colitis (a frustrating and painful digestive disorder).

    A one-month supply of generic mesalamine costs just under $200.00 for a one-month supply in America. If you need brand-name Asacol, you can purchase it through in a three-month supply for approximately $145.00.
  • Jardiance Cost: This type 2 diabetes medication helps kidneys process glucose more efficiently, aiding with a patient’s glycemic control.

    It’s an expensive drug: In the United States, just one month of Jardiance starts at $585.00, or $20.00 per pill. If you buy Jardiance through instead of an American brick-and-mortar pharmacy, you’ll pay about $135.00 for a 30-day supply of brand-name Jardiance, or about $4.50 per pill (up to 77.5% savings).
  • Wellbutrin XL Cost: Wellbutrin is a prescription medication that can help with either depression symptoms or as a smoking cessation aid.

    Unfortunately, Wellbutrin XL can be quite costly. A 30-day supply of Wellbutrin XL can cost over $1750.00 in the United States, or nearly $60.00 per tablet. If you purchase brand-name Wellbutrin XL through instead, you’ll save nearly 97% on a 90-day supply for about $125.00, or approximately $1.40 per tablet.

Ready to pay less on your prescription medications? Let’s get started.

Are Prescriptions Tax Deductible

Save on Prescription Medication Prices Year-Round with an Online Canadian Pharmacy

When you’re looking for ways to make your medical costs more affordable, you need lower prices.

Finding clever ways to reduce your tax bill once a year can help a lot, but we’re even happier to save you more money through substantially lower drug prices. was founded out of a passion for getting more affordable prescription medications to Americans and others year-round, not just once a year. So if you require reliably high-quality, cost-effective brand-name and generic medications, we’re ready to help.

We understand that, by partnering with us, you’re putting a lot of trust in our services.

We’re thankful for that trust.

We work hard to ensure that our processes are intuitive, our site is helpful, and everything we offer is high-quality and safe. We go above and beyond to ensure your safety by following all requirements listed by the Canadian International Pharmacy Association (CIPA) and the International Pharmacy Association of British Columbia (IPABC).

Our dedication to a stellar customer experience is renowned. is pleased to have an overall 4.8/5 star rating over hundreds of thousands of independent online pharmacy customer reviews.

When you’re ready to make a purchase through our website, we’ll be there to help you every step of the way. The friendly representatives staffing our call center are happy to connect you with a pharmacist, answer any questions, or even help you place an order over the phone.

Interested in getting started? Connect with us at 1-866-539-5330, or contact us online. We’re ready to help you find the medication you need at an affordable price.

The information provided on the website is intended to facilitate awareness about healthcare products and medical conditions generally but it is not a substitute for professional medical attention or advice. You should always speak with a qualified healthcare practitioner before taking any prescription or non-prescription drug.
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