Chronic illness

Q&A with NeedyMeds, a resource for medication costs

NeedyMeds NeedyMeds is a nonprofit that offers help with the costs of medicine. We asked NeedyMeds Director of Education Carla Dellaporta a few questions to help explain their services.

What services does NeedyMeds provide?

NeedyMeds connects people nationwide through our website and toll-free helpline—free and anonymously—to programs that will help them afford their healthcare expenses.

Who are those services for?

Services are for anyone who resides within the United States.

How do I know what medications NeedyMeds helps with?

Director of Education Carla Dellaporta

Simply stated, NeedyMeds can help you find cost savings programs for all medications including prescription, over-the-counter, name brand and generic. You can type the name of the medication into “Drug Search” on the top left hand side of needymeds.org. Or you can reach out to the expert call center counselors at 800-503-6897.

What if I don’t find a cost savings program for my medication on your website? Is there any other service or project you offer that might help?

If a cost savings program is not available for your medication, you can try the NeedyMeds Drug Discount Card, which is free and anonymous. However, keep in mind the card is not valid if used with insurance. The card may be used in place of your insurance and especially if you fall under one of the following categories:

  • Your insurance has no drug coverage.
  • You have a high deductible.
  • You have a high copay and by using the drug discount card without insurance, the cost to you is lower than your copay.

Note: If you use the card in place of your insurance, those costs won’t go toward any deductible or out of pocket maximum

The card is best for minimizing the burden for those who take multiple common medications. It is unlikely to help with rare disease drug costs. For help with rare disease drug costs, try the manufacturer directly, or try searching NeedyMeds by diagnosis here or by medication here. We offer help with those prescription assistance applications.

How do I get a Drug Discount Card?

To get a Drug Discount Card, you can visit the NeedyMeds Drug Discount Card page and order one to be mailed to you; you can print out a discount card using this PDF; you can download Storylines, the NeedyMeds self-care app that comes preloaded with the card; or, you can request one over the phone with a call center counselor at 800-503-6897. If you would like to receive a bulk supply of Drug Discount Cards and educational brochures, you can send an email to outreach@needymeds.org.

What one or two services do you want more people to know about?

  1. HEALfundr: The NeedyMeds crowdfunding platform that makes it possible to fundraise for much needed medical expenses with 100 percent verified campaigns.
  2. Camps and Scholarships Databases: NeedyMeds has databases dedicated to finding camps, retreats, recreational programs and educational scholarships for those living with a specific diagnosis.

I’ve heard prescription assistance websites sometimes scam people. How do I know this isn’t a scam?

We do not charge individuals for any information or help. You should almost always be able to find and apply to prescription assistance programs at no cost to you. Learn more about spotting a scam here.

How is NeedyMeds able to provide these discounts?

NeedyMeds is dedicated to joining the movement towards affordable health care for all. Providing access to educational tools and healthcare cost savings programs to people in need free of charge was the reason our president, Dr. Richard Sagall, founded NeedyMeds. Like other nonprofits, NeedyMeds relies on various sources of financial support to make our work possible including corporate and individual donations, grants, thoroughly reviewed website partners, as well as various software or transactional fees for services to companies we work with.

I’ve heard you also help with pets. Is this true?

As many of us know, taking care of the four-legged members of our families—such as dogs—can be quite the expense. It turns out that often dogs are prescribed the same medications that humans take. To save money, a pet parent can request the vet write a prescription, which can be filled—with the NeedyMeds Drug Discount Card—at a regular pharmacy. It’s an unexpected way to save money for countless families. Check out this video to learn more.

How can a person apply or find out more?

It’s extremely beneficial that there is no need to apply, sign up or register for NeedyMeds! All of our resources are free, anonymous and accessible to anyone living within the U.S. You can learn more by visiting www.needymeds.org or by calling our expert counselors at 800-503-6897 (9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET).

Anything else you’d like to add?

Spreading the word about NeedyMeds is something that requires endless partnerships. Please join us in letting as many people know about NeedyMeds as possible. Awareness is sometimes all it takes to help someone in need get their much-needed healthcare expenses met.

For more ideas for navigating the costs of chronic illness, check out our recent blog series.

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