Programs and services offered differ among drug manufacturers but may include:
• Help with insurance reimbursement
• Referrals to co-pay relief programs
• Help with the application process
• Discounted or free medications for patients who do not qualify for other assistance
People can often get help with the cost of their medicines from public and private programs. Some of these programs let people buy drugs at discounted prices. Others help people who can’t afford any part of their medicine costs. Most pharmaceutical (drug) companies have a patient assistance program which provide specific drug therapies at no cost to qualified uninsured patients. Each company has its own application forms asking for necessary information. Clinical trials for promising cancer drug therapies may offer free or reduced cost prescriptions. Check with your healthcare provider, insurance representative or study contact.
These are ways to cut costs when buying your medications …
- Find out if your health plan offers mail-order pharmacy service. You can often get a 90-day supply of medicines mailed to you, which costs less because you pay 1 co-pay instead of 3.
- Ask your doctor if generic drugs can be used to treat your health problems. Generics are proven equivalents to brand name drugs and often cost much less than brand name drugs. Some health plans charge lower co-pays for generic drugs.
- Take all your medicines with you to each health care appointment and review them with your doctor to see if you still need everything you are taking.
Provided by the National Council on Aging, BenefitsCheckUp is an online resource for people age 55 and older who find it hard to pay for their medicines, health care, utilities, food, and other basic needs. BenefitsCheckUp helps you find state, federal, and private benefits programs where you live. This resource includes programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. This service can find drug assistance programs that might work for you.
The website also includes other questionnaires that search for programs to help with rent, food, housing, property taxes, and other needs.
The Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation Patient Assistance Program helps those in need obtain our medications free of charge. To learn more, please call 1-800-556-8317.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Support
The BMS Access Support program provides resources to help patients understand their insurance coverage and find information on sources of financial support, including co-pay assistance for eligible commercially insured patients.
Calgene Patient Support
Can help you and your loved ones understand the programs and services available to you.
Genentech Access Solutions
Committed to helping patients access the Genentech medicines they need. Over the past 20+ years, Genentech has helped more than 1.5 million patients.
Provides financial assistance to cover co-insurance, co-payments, health care premiums and deductibles for certain medications and therapies. If you have been prescribed a medication and your insurance company covers it, but you still cannot afford the coinsurance or copayment required, we may be able to assist you by paying for part of your costs. If you are eligible for health insurance, but cannot afford the insurance premium, we may be able to assist with your insurance premiums.
Lilly PatientOne strives to offer reliable and individualized treatment support for eligible patients prescribed a Lilly Oncology product whether they are insured, underinsured, or simply uninsured.
Lilly PatientOne Co-pay Program—patients pay no more than $25 per dose—to assist eligible patients with co-pay and coinsurance costs for prescribed Lilly Oncology products where available. No income eligibility requirement.For more information, visit www.LillyPatientOne.com.
The United States’ health insurance program for people age 65 or older, although certain younger people with disabilities might also qualify. This federal government website can help you sign up for Medicare and choose the right Medicare-approved prescription drug plan (called the Part D plan) based on where you live, your income, and the drugs you take. You can join a Part D plan during open enrollment if you already have Medicare Part A and/or Part B. If you had prescription coverage and recently lost it, you may be able to enroll at times other than open enrollment.
There are a number of prescription drug assistance programs in each state of the U.S. Some of these programs, such as the Extra Help program, are designed to support Medicare beneficiaries, while some other available resources can also support state residents who are not enrolled in Medicare. Fortunately, many states that do not offer Extra Help offer other programs to help residents afford their prescription medications. Go to www.medicareadvantage.com for a listing of the state programs.
If you are enrolled in a state pharmacy assistance program, including Medicaid, you will probably also be enrolled in Medicare Part D. If you have prescription drug coverage through your current health insurance or get discounts on your prescriptions through other programs, review your coverage closely to see if the Medicare drug plan will save you more money on your prescriptions.
If you don’t qualify for Extra Help, Medicare also keeps a list of drugs that are on private prescription drug assistance plans. You can find the list on their website. You can search by the drug name and find details on the programs and their contact information.
A state-run program funded by the federal and state government. It helps people and families who have very limited incomes. Medicaid pays for health care costs, such as doctor visits, hospital visits, and prescription drugs. You can find eligibility requirements and general information at the website above.
Each state’s Medicaid program is run by that state, income cut-offs, asset limits. Benefits vary from one state to another. In some states, the program may have a different name (TennCare, Medi-Cal, etc.). Contact your State Health Department for more information on requirements and how to apply. To find your State Health Department, go to www.medicaid.gov or call the US Department of Health and Human Services at this toll-free number: 1-877-696-6775.
This generous organization helps people who cannot afford medicine or health care costs. You can find information about free or discounted medication programs, free or low cost clinics, and camps and scholarship programs. They also offer a discount drug card that can provide significant savings on your prescriptions.
NeedyMeds is committed to education. Regularly scheduled webinars are one way that Needy Meds keep their users informed about relevant health-related topics. Upcoming seminars focus on reducing healthcare costs. Contact Carla at 800 503-6897 or through the website www.needymeds.org.
Partnership for Prescription Assistance
A free service to help people who do not have prescription drug coverage find assistance programs. They offer a single point of access to more than 475 public and private programs, including nearly 200 offered by pharmaceutical companies.
The service is run by a group of drug companies, health care providers, patient advocacy organizations, and community groups. PPA is connected to hundreds of patient assistance programs, including those offered by bio-pharmaceutical companies. They also have information on free drug discount cards funded by private companies which can help reduce your costs for certain brand or generic drugs.
If you fill out the online form, your answers are quickly compared to the requirements for the different programs and you will see a list of programs that might help you. From there, you can download each program’s application form and learn how to apply. Phone and online services are available in Spanish or English.
Your doctor or nurse can also use the website to find programs for you. They may be able to complete the application forms for you and send them by e-mail or fax.
Patient Advocate Foundation
When a patient or family or friend contacts PAF for medical debt crisis issues, a case manager determines the type and scope of the patient’s medical debt. The patient or family or friend is advised on how to apply for charity care through the hospital’s billing office. The patient will be required to complete an application and provide financial information in order to be approved for financial assistance. Most hospitals have a board that determines if the patient is eligible and this process can take up to 30 days. Some hospitals are non-profit and more than willing to work with the patients.
If the patient has a diagnosis that qualifies for co-pay assistance, the patient may be referred to PAF’s Co-Pay Relief Program to determine program eligibility.
Patient Services Incorporated (PSI)
A national, non-profit group that helps people with certain chronic illnesses and their families pay their health insurance premiums and drug co-pays. Only people with a few types of cancer are included in this program (see the website for the list of covered illnesses). People who have these conditions and need help paying health insurance premiums or co-pays are helped based on their medical and financial need.
The Patient Access Network Foundation (PANF)
A non-profit group that helps some under-insured people who can’t afford the out-of-pockets costs of medical care. The program helps people with certain medical conditions who meet their financial, insurance, and medical requirements. Only a few types of cancer are included in their program and they are listed on the PANF website.
Connects eligible patients to a range of assistance programs that offer insurance support, co-pay help, and medicines for free or at a savings.
PhRMA (Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America)
A directory of patient assistance programs for prescription drugs. Through these programs, PhRMA member companies supply free medicines to millions of eligible low-income patients.
Patient assistance programs are run by pharmaceutical companies to provide free medications to people who cannot afford to buy their medicine. RxAssist offers a comprehensive database of these patient assistance programs, as well as practical tools, news, and articles so that health care professionals and patients can find the information they need. All in one place.
A non-profit pharmacy committed to helping people get the medications they need at an affordable price.
Ship medications directly to patients’ homes. To make it simple and cost-effective for our patients, we usually ship enough medication for 90 or 180 days at a time.
Rx Outreach is available to qualifying individuals and families. Patients can quickly check their Eligibility online. Patients can be on Medicare, Medicaid or other health insurance and still receive medications from Rx Outreach.
There are no additional enrollment fees, membership fees, or standard shipping fees. Since 2010, Rx Outreach has saved our patients more than $320 million on their prescription medications. Use the Savings Calculator to find out how much can be saved on specific medications.
The Assistance Fund
An independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to providing financial assistance to patients with serious and chronic diseases. TAF has programs for copay assistance, insurance premiums and incidentals and health care expenses.