With the debilitating costs of many pharmaceuticals, individuals can be confronted with choosing between medicine and other necessities like food, utilities or even rent. Sometimes, people will ration their prescriptions to extend periods between refilling.
Two Memphis-based nonprofits, the National Transplant Foundation and Good Shepherd Pharmacy, have teamed up to defray the cost of life-saving medications for recovering transplant patients.
“It is a new program and as far as I know we are the only one of this kind,” said Dr. Phillip Baker, founder of Good Shepherd Pharmacy, a nonprofit membership-based pharmacy that provides medications to those who lack health insurance.
Nationally, anti-rejection medication, which is part of the recovery following a transplant surgery, typically runs about $2,400 a month. Even with insurance, out-of-pocket costs can range from $200 to $600. Most patients recovering from surgery can’t work. Many are housebound and some are bed-ridden.
Patients of the National Transplant Foundation can receive financial hardship grants for transplant-related costs. This can drastically reduce or even eliminate the expense. In addition to anti-rejection medication, maintenance medications and medications prescribed for adverse reactions are included.
Through a partnership with Good Shepherd Pharmacy, patients who have received transplants can access pharmaceuticals at a reduced rate.