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Paul Rifenberg CLU, ChFC

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Prescription Drug Assistance for Seniors

Aside from the prescription drug coverage offered through Medicare D (and available through ALL Medicare Advantage plans), there are a few prescription drug assistance programs available that you might want to investigate. I can't help you directly with obtaining most of these programs, but here are just a few that I am aware of:

IF YOU'RE A VETERAN: There's a very nice program available for you. Call their toll-free number (877) 222-8387 or go on-line at www.va.gov/elig.

There is a company called Patient Assistant Services that works directly with over 100 pharmaceutical companies and 2,000 prescription drugs. If you are a legal United States citizen, have a family income less than or equal to $25,000, and are not qualified for private or government drug coverage, you may qualify for this program.

I have applications in my office. Call me at (269) 683-7400 or (888) 783-0498. They require a one-time non-refundable $20 application fee, but the potential savings are quite great. If for example, you are taking ten or more prescriptions, a full one year's supply through this program would only cost $575!!!

There is also a program sponsored by the Eli Lilly Company called the Lilly Answers Program. You can get all the information by calling their toll-free number (877) RXLILLY or going on-line to www.lillyanswers.com. Essentially, the requirements are similar to the ones offered by Patient Assistance Services, except they will provide you with the eligible drugs for a flat $12 co-pay. It's possible some drugs may be available through one program and not the other, so check both of them out.

Some other web-sites of interest:

www.pfizer.com The Pfizer for Living Card Program offers a 30 day supply of their drugs for just $15.

www.TogetherRx.com Multiple pharmaceutical companies participate in this web-site, each with their own savings of approximately 20-40% off the cost of prescriptions.

www.theunadvertisedbrand.com Get all the facts on generic drugs on this web-site. Use the generic drugs value calculator to see cost savings using a brand name prescription vs. a generic. You can take fruther action by writing your legislator or giving a pledge card to your physician.

www.needymeds.com Learned about this one through the public relations department at our own Lakeland Hospital. This is pretty much a hodge-podge of various programs that are available through different pharmaceutical firms.

Lastly, we are aware of a program through the State of Michigan that allows uninsured, low-income residents to get prescription drugs at a discount. For more information, call (866) 755-6479.

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