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Prescription Drug Assistance
Prescription drugs can eat up a huge percentage of your health care budget. But many times medication is exactly what is needed to control your health conditions. If you can't pay for your medicines and supplies without help, you should tell your health care provider immediately. Your doctor may be able to direct you to local programs or even provide free samples.
The Medicare program offers a searchable database of prescription drug assistance programs. This website provides valuable information on public and private programs offering discounted or free medication. You can also learn about Medicare health plans with prescription coverage.
Listed below are some programs that may help offset the cost of your prescription costs. Many of the programs have age or income limitations and may not be right for you.
Testing Strips, Meters and Lancets
The most common need of people with diabetes is for free or low cost testing strips. We're continuing to search for sources for reducing the cost on testing strips.
You can also receive a free glucometer from Defeat Diabetes Foundation email us at: glucometer@DefeatDiabetes.org
Programs That Provide Prescription Assistance
Community Assistance Program - Defeat Diabetes Foundation offers a FREE DISCOUNT PRESCRIPTION CARD through the Community Assistance Program, which is administrated through National Benefit Builders.
This card works with, or without, insurance and provides discounts on a wide variety of drugs, syringes and testing supplies at discounts of 30% – 80%. It also works in conjunction with Medicare or Medi-cal and can be of special benefit to seniors dealing with the Part D doughnut hole. Every time you have a prescription filled the pharmacy will run the card on file in conjunction with whatever insurance you have.
You simply need to request the number of cards you need for your family (one per person, per pharmacy). All the members of your family need their own card and, if you use multiple pharmacies, you need one for each pharmacy. So, be sure to order enough.
Helping Patients – Helping Patients brings together America’s pharmaceutical companies, doctors, patient advocacy organizations and civic groups to help low-income, uninsured patients get free or nearly free brand-name medicines. Through this site, Helping Patients offers a single point of access to more than 275 public and private patient assistance programs, including more than 150 programs offered by pharmaceutical companies.
Needy Meds -- is an excellent source of information on Patient Assistance Programs to offset the cost of prescription medications. The site also provides information on specialized programs at the state level.
RXassist – Is a program of Volunteers in Health care and is sponsored by the Robert Woods Foundation a national leader in health care research and policy issues.
Rx Outreach is a new Patient assistance program developed by Express Scripts Specialty Distribution Services, Inc. (ESSDS). The program provides qualified low-income individuals and families access to generic versions of brand name medications. They also provide information about low cost drug cards.
Together Rx Access – This program is for families who are not eligible for Medicare and has strict income limits for inclusion – but may help contain the cost of prescription drugs. The card can save 25% - 40% on brand name drugs and supplies (not all are covered). Many oral diabetes medications are included in the program as well as some diabetic supplies. The program is supported by a number of large pharmaceutical companies and is accepted at the majority of pharmacies in the United States.
Partnership for Prescription Assistance – The Partnership brings together America’s pharmaceutical companies, doctors, other health care providers, patient advocacy organizations and community groups to help qualifying patients who lack prescription coverage get the medicines they need through a public or private program that’s right for them. Many individuals will get their medication free or nearly free. The Partnership seeks to increase awareness of patient assistance programs and boost enrollment of those who are eligible. Their website offers a single point of access to more than 475 public and private patient assistance programs, including more than 150 programs offered by pharmaceutical companies. To access the Partnership for Prescription Assistance by phone, you can call toll-free, 1-888-4PPA-NOW 1-888-4PPA-NOW
Pharmaceutical Company Programs
Santo-fi Aventis, the makers of Lantus and Apidra, two frequently prescribed insulins has a patient assistance program available. An application must be submitted for each patient. Applications can be submitted via fax, or US mail.
• Patient must be a US citizen or resident, with a Social Security Number.
• Patient must have no insurance coverage either private and/or public (e.g. Medicaid).
• Patient must be under the care of a licensed healthcare provider who is authorized to prescribe, dispense, and administer medicine in the US.
• Patient must meet the following financial criteria:
Annual household income of <250% of current Federal Poverty Level (FPL) for diabetes products.
For seniors Only
Benefits Check Up – A Program of the National Council On Aging
Benefits Checkup has a comprehensive online service to screen for federal, state and some local private and public benefits for older adults (ages 55 and over). It contains over 1,300 different programs from all fifty states (including the District of Columbia). On average there are 50 to 70 programs available to individuals per state.
In addition to identifying the programs that a person may be eligible to receive, Benefits Checkup also provides a detailed description of the programs, local contacts for additional information (typically the addresses and phone numbers of where to apply for the programs), and materials to help successfully apply for each program.
Updated February 13, 2013
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