Yesterday I addressed the issue of availability of antibiotics (without a prescription) on the Internet contributing to the problem of antibiotic-resistant germs. Kairol Rosenthal commented that some patients may be ordering from these Internet sites because they are financially strapped (and not because they are stupidly preferring to self-prescribe instead of follow a doctor's orders).
If Healthy Survivors can't afford their prescriptions, they seek out resources that might be able to help.
For starters, they can discuss the problem with their physicians' staff and with local disease-based organizations. And they can check out two national programs:
Wal-Mart's $4 prescription program: In September 2006, Wal-Mart offered a short list of generic drugs that cost patients $4 for a 30-day supply. So if patients' physicians prescribed one of those drugs and gave the "OK" for the generic, the patient was in luck. Since then, Wal-Mart has greatly expanded the list of drugs available through this program. In May 2008, Wal-Mart included 350 generic drugs for $10 for a 90-day supply.
RxAssist: This is a web-based search program (underwritten by AstraZeneca) that helps patients find resources that help with low-priced or free drugs for financially strapped patients. This pharmaceutical access information center created by Volunteers in Health Care (VIH), a national resource center for safety net organizations. On this site, patients can obtain the contact information for each state's drug assistance program(s) and for pharmaceutical companies' drug assistance program(s).
Staff working with these programs may be able to guide patients to additional available resources that assist patients with needed drugs.