is now available without a prescription.
The same medicine is also marketed as "Allavert"
as well as various store-brand generic "Loratadine".
These are all the same and may be used interchangeably.
We are pleased that, unlike some previous
drugs which have “left behind” their pediatric versions when they made the
transition from “Rx” to “OTC”, all the versions of Claritin which we use
in kids (liquid, melt-in mouth “reditabs”, and pills) are indeed available
over the counter to the public.
The fact that you no longer need a
prescription to obtain Claritin means that, for many of you, it will no longer
be covered by your insurance. Nonetheless, our recommendation is that you
buy the OTC version and your child continue to take it as previously prescribed.
Although the cost of OTC Claritin on a monthly basis may be slightly
higher than your previous insurance "co-pay" (and higher than other OTC
allergy medicines), we feel if Claritin has worked well for your child in the
past it is worth the price. Claritin remains the best “non-sedating”
antihistamine for most children – it has been used longer and more extensively
studied in children than the alternatives, it has the fewest side effects, and
the most flexible dosing. Nothing about being available without a prescription
changes these facts.
We will still provide a Claritin prescription
to clarify our dosing instructions if you request it, but
will NOT change our recommendation to a different drug simply to obtain
insurance coverage except in cases of extreme financial hardship.
around! Our research suggests there has been a lot of price variability on
this product in stores since it became OTC, with some stores overcharging
terribly. Avoid buying small quantity (5 or 10 tablet) packages, as these
will cost more per pill. Try to get packages with 24 or 48 tablets.
This will get you the best price. As of July 2007, the prices we think
you SHOULD be paying for this medicine are as follows:
cost per month
per 4oz bottle
tsp (5mg) per day
10mg disintegrating tabs
per box of 48 tabs
tab per day