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Partnership aims to boost access to medications (15700)

15700Health News2005-04-13

Partnership aims to boost access to medications

A national coalition has unveiled a new public-private partnership aimed at helping low-income people get access to needed medications, including HIV antiretroviral drugs. Called the Partnership for Prescription Assistance, the program offers a single point of access to more than 275 public and private patient assistance programs that provide free or low-cost medications, including more than 150 assistance programs offered directly through pharmaceutical companies. Information also will be available on government programs that low-income people may be qualified to access, including Medicaid and Medicare.

The partnership--comprising drug companies, health care providers, advocates and activists, and community leaders--recently launched a nationwide advertising and public-awareness campaign to encourage as many people as possible to take advantage of this new single-entry source into scores of drug-access programs. Interested participants can call (888) 4PPA-NOW or go online to to find out if they're eligible for assistance and begin the process of accessing relevant programs.

"Millions of Americans already benefit from patient assistance programs, but we know that millions more who may be eligible have not yet enrolled," says Mary E. Frank, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians, in a press release. "Because of this effort on the part of the pharmaceutical industry to simplify and broaden their assistance programs, each patient's personal physician will find it easier to help them get the medications they need. That's why the American Academy of Family Physicians recommends this program to those we serve."

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