|By Daniel Kelley, Belleville News-Democrat|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
"It gets to the point where you ask 'Do I really need this medicine or do I stop taking it and hope for the best?'" Haney said. "You just can't afford the medicine anymore."
For help, Haney and other residents turned to a prescription discount program began 10 months ago in
While there are no prerequisites to participate in the ProAct Prescription Discount Card Program, the program intends to help low-income residents without insurance or who are under-insured. Nearly 28,800 people in
The card cannot be used in conjunction with other medical coverage. It benefits those paying out of pocket for medication and covers all brand name and generic drugs. Discounts are also available on vision, Lasik, hearing services, even to purchase medication for pets.
The county partnered with health care company
Haney said such programs were crucial for her and others because the state limited its coverage to only four of her 15 medications.
"If you have a disease like MS for 22 years, how does the state expect you to be cut off of all but four medicines?" she asked. "Obviously, you needed it otherwise doctors wouldn't have given it to you to begin with. ... They've thrown us to the side."
Local residents saved on average more than
ProAct account executive
"It really does help with residents paying for prescriptions out of pocket," Eckdahl said. "The savings are quite significant."
"There is a minimal transaction fee on each claim," Eckdahl said. "
"For residents who lack full prescription coverage or for those who have no coverage at all, a trip to the pharmacy can be very costly," Kern said. "By taking advantage of this cost-free program residents can see sizable savings on each of the prescriptions that they fill."
Eckdahl said the program also helps those with medical insurance whose coverage excludes some medications.
The program is growing with additional counties joining the program each month, Eckdahl said.