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Free Medicine? Where Do I Sign?

Updated on August 22, 2011


Even with medical insurance the cost of medication can be incredibly expensive.  If you do not have medical insurance then getting prescriptions is near impossible. Depending on the ailments a person has it is possible that they can be taking more than one type of medication daily.  This can add up quickly making monthly medical bills for prescriptions skyrocket but there is help out there.  There are programs to help get assistance with medication anywhere from reduced costs or even free medications.  These programs are created and provided by the Pharmaceutical Companies. If you are on medication now and are having problems affording the medication it is worth looking into to see what type of financial help you can get.  Almost every Pharmaceutical company has some type of patient assistance program, however not every medication is necessarily covered.  There are a few things to know about when looking into Pharmaceutical patient assistance programs:


  1. Patients Must Meet Financial Criteria – Each Pharmaceutical patient assistance program and the criteria for assistance is different.  So you have to figure out which Pharmaceutical company provides your medication and see what the financial criteria is for that particular program.  
  2. Patients Must Meet Other Criteria – In addition to financial criteria there are also other criteria; for example what type of medical insurance you currently have. Make sure that you understand all the criteria that is necessary for the assistance.
  3. Medication Must Be Specified - Not every type of medication is included in the program so you must check and make sure that the medication you are taking is included. If your medicine is not listed it is still a good idea to double check with the company.
  4. Must Have Advocate – Most programs want you to have a medical advocate. This can be anyone from your doctor’s office. Some medical clinics have a specified person who is an advocate such as a nurse or another member of the medical staff.
  5. Must Follow Rules of Program – To get into and stay in the program you must follow the rules.  Not following the rules can end the program. So be sure to provide any and all the information that the company asks for.


There are a few simple steps to take to see if you qualify for these programs.  The simplest and most direct approach is asking your doctor, pharmacist or medical advocate about the medicine that you are currently taking to see if it is on the list of medicines that are in the Pharmaceuticals program.  You can also view the website of the Pharmaceutical Company of the medicine that you take or check out the sites of patient assistant programs that list different companies and the medicines that are on the program.  Do the research, you may just find that you are able to get your medicines for free.  

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    • Triplet Mom profile image

      Triplet Mom 8 years ago from West Coast

      Shawna - Thank you. That is great that they offer free prenatal vitamins. I have also noticed that pharmacies are offering free testing and clinics as well to help all of their customers. I think that is a great sign.

    • shawna.wilson profile image

      shawna.wilson 8 years ago from Arizona

      Great information. There's a grocery store where I live that offers free prenatal vitamins at their pharmacy. All you have to do is bring in a prescription from your OB. The program is for everyone, not just those with financial need or no insurance, so it's great!