With the costs of medications skyrocketing in America, it is no wonder people are financially struggling. Those who do not have insurance can end up paying thousands of dollars a year. Those with prescription insurance coverage may have much of their costs covered, but they also must pay out hundreds in out-of-pocket co-pays. If you are not covered through insurance, there are are prescription assistance plans that can help. Through these programs, people can get the help they need so they can afford their medications.
How Do Prescription Assistance Plans Work?
With Rx assistance, people who do not have health insurance coverage can receive assistance with their medication and may be able to receive their medication for free if they meet certain qualifications. These programs are often referred to as PAP (prescription assistance programs) or medication assistance programs. With the vast majority of drug companies now offering PAP programs, people without insurance can receive the medications they need, yet cannot afford. To find out if you are eligible, you will simply need to apply and meet the criteria of the PAP.
What are the Eligibility and Enrollment Requirements of PAP?
Depending on the Rx assistance program, an applicant will need to meet certain eligibility requirements to be considered for lowered cost or free medications:
* A person must have limited or no insurance coverage for prescription medications.
* The applicant must have a financial need and fall under the income and asset limits for their family size.
* The person applying for a PAP must be a United States citizen and have proof of their citizenship.
Depending on the prescription assistance program, the patient and their doctor may need to fill out an application and submit it to the PAP. Additional pieces of information are often needed, such as:
* Medical documentation providing information on why the drug is needed
* Proof the patient does not have prescription drug coverage and is not eligible for Medicare or Medicaid
* W2s, income tax returns, bank statements and check stubs provide proof of income
The income requirements vary by program and correlate to family size. For instance, one program requires a one-person family to make no more than $19,600 per year. A family of four cannot make more than $40,000 per year.
What Happens When a Person Is Approved for a PAP?
The approval process can sometimes take a few weeks to be completed. Once the patient has been approved for prescription assistance, the medication will typically be sent to the patient’s doctor or their pharmacy so it can be distributed.
The amount of medication the patient will receive at one time depends on the program. Some rx assistance programs will only give a one-month supply at a time while others may give up to six months.
Some prescription assistance programs certify applicants for an entire year while others may require a new application to be submitted with each refill. It is important people educate themselves on the requirements so they can work with their doctor to ensure the requirements are fully met so there will be no delays in receiving the medications.
How many PAP programs are there to help with prescription assistance?
There are over 270 different Rx assistance programs that can help people to lower their prescription costs or provide them with free medications. Though the eligibility requirements are different for each of these companies, there are three main qualifications that must be met for all. As long as a person meets the income requirements for their family size, is a United States citizen and has no prescription insurance coverage, they are likely to qualify for most, if not all, of the available programs.