Cutting Prescription Drug Costs

Updated:Feb 7,2014

Excerpted from Stroke Connection March/April 2003 (Last science update March 2013)

The cost of prescription medicines can quickly add up, particularly if a stroke survivor needs more than one. Many stroke survivors take a combination of a high blood pressure drug, an anti-platelet and an anti-coagulant.

An Internet program called NeedyMeds.com may offer some light in this dark financial tunnel. Founded in 1997 by a social worker and a physician, this program provides information about patient assistance programs (PAP) offered by pharmaceutical companies.

Some facts about Patient Assistance Programs:

  • Many companies have PAPs to help people reduce medication expenses
  • Some PAPs provide discounts on medication
  • Some provide medications free of charge to patients who can’t afford them and who meet certain criteria (each company has different rules, usually based on income and insurance)

NeedyMeds.com offers a database of more than 900 companies who provide these programs, and outlines their qualifications. Medications are organized on by company name and drug brand name. The program offers a copy of each company’s PAP application.

When you submit your application include:

  • Proof of income
  • The original prescription signed by your healthcare provider

Once you are qualified, most programs provide medications in three-month supplies.

NeedyMeds’ plans include expanding services to help patients deal not only with medication costs but medical supply needs as well.

Additional financial resources



This content was last reviewed on 03/18/2013.