LOWELL – The Gloucester-based non-profit that has saved Lowellians more than $20,000 in prescription costs through its drug discount card since partnering with the city in December 2011, has announced it will now also offer a FREE Helpline Number for residents who need assistance locating health care resources.
“We are pleased to be able to offer this valuable service to the residents of Lowell, “ said Rich Sagall, MD, president of NeedyMeds. “This new service will compliment the savings Lowell residents are getting from the discount card.”
People who call the NeedyMeds helpline at 1-800-572-6091 will receive free assistance locating programs that may be able to help them with medication and healthcare costs. For those that need further support, they will be guided through the process of applying to programs. NeedyMeds staff will mail out applications and conduct follow-up to insure that anyone who calls receives all the help they can.
“This resource will be particularly helpful for those in the city that may not have access to a computer or who need assistance navigating the Internet,” said Elizabeth Messenger, Outreach & Education Manager of NeedyMeds.
The NeedyMeds website, www.needymeds.org, has accurate and up-to-date information on over 5,000 programs that can assist people, including the pharmaceutical patient assistance programs (PAPs) that can provide medications for free or low-cost for those who are eligible.
“I’m pleased to see this partnership between NeedyMeds and the City of Lowell continue to grow in support of more and more families as they deal with the rising costs of prescription drugs and health care,” said Mayor Patrick Murphy, who made the motion to bring NeedyMeds to Lowell.
On a related note, the NeedyMeds discount drug cards are still available at the Mayor’s Office, the Senior Center and various social service agencies.
Each time the Lowell card is used, the City of Lowell receives a small amount that helps to fund city-wide health-related projects.
Participating pharmacies offer a discount of up to 80 percent for prescription drugs. The average savings is 50% or around $30 per prescription.
The cards are currently accepted at more than 70,000 pharmacies nationwide, with over 30 located within a 5-mile radius of downtown Lowell. The cards can be shared with family members or friends, and they have no expiration date.
NeedyMeds’ drug discount cards may be used to obtain a discount on prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, or medical supplies written as a prescription, as well as pet medications that can be purchased at a pharmacy
The card can be a lifesaver for people without health insurance. People with health insurance can benefit from the card if:
* The insurance has no drug coverage
* There is a high drug deductible
* There is a low medicine cap that has been met
* There is a high co-pay and the card offers a better price
· The patient is in the Medicare Part D donut hole
The discount cards cannot be used in combination with any private or government-sponsored health insurance program. They cannot be used to lower a co-pay, but consumers can compare the savings offered by the card versus the cost of the co-pay before purchasing a prescription.