Switch On Your HIV Smarts.

Five Ways to Make Sure You Get Your Meds With a New Health Plan

, by San Francisco AIDS Foundation

PillsBlueGreenCROPKeeping up with a treatment regimen is essential to good health for people with HIV; missed doses can lead to a resurgence of the virus and to the development of drug resistance, making some drugs ineffective and limiting future options for treatment.

If you’re starting a new health care plan, how can you make sure your meds are there when you need them?

HIVHealthReform.org’s new fact sheet offers five strategies for making sure you get your meds, whether you’re starting coverage through the new health insurance marketplaces, enrolling in Medicaid, or accessing new insurance through an employer. Check out the excerpt below, and read the fact sheet in full or download a PDF at HIVHealthReform.org. (While you’re there, check out their other excellent resources to help you understand—and get the most from—your new health insurance options.)

Are you in a new health plan? Here’s how to make sure you get your meds.

By Priti Bhattarai

January 9, 2014

…If you find yourself in a situation where your medications may not be covered for a certain period of time, we have some ideas to help you.

Plan Ahead—Get a Refill Before Switching
Give yourself some extra time to make sure everything is working by refilling your medications before you make the switch to a new health plan. You’ll be covered if there’s a glitch. You can ask your pharmacist for a “partial refill” if it’s too soon for a full 30-day refill.

Find Out What Your State ADAP Can Do
Many state AIDS Drug Assistance Programs (ADAP) can step in and provide coverage in a pinch, especially if you are leaving ADAP for Medicaid or private insurance…. [Click here for a fact sheet and chart detailing which states’ ADAPs are coordinating with the health insurance marketplaces, and what they will cover.]

Ask Your Pharmacy for Help
Many local pharmacies can provide “bridge supplies” to make sure you get meds. Two pharmacies, Walgreens and CVS Caremark, announced special transition plans, and others may have similar policies in place.  They may provide 15-30 day supplies, and bill your insurance plan once your coverage kicks in.  They may also bill you later for a co-pay.

Pharmaceutical Co-pay Assistance Programs
If you can’t get help from your pharmacy, or can’t afford the costs of medications, a pharmaceutical manufacturer assistance program may be able to help.  HarborPath.org and the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (www.pparx.org) are two places to start.

Contact Your Doctor or Case Manager
Remember, you’re not alone.  Your health care provider and case manager are there to help if you can’t get your medications. Give them a call and ask for help….

Click here to read this fact sheet in full and access other resources on HIVHealthReform.org.



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