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Together Rx Access(R) Program Enrolls More Than 1.5 Million Americans Without Prescription Drug Coverage
Date:5/19/2008

Milestone Underscores Program's Commitment to Helping the Uninsured Better

Access Medicines Needed to Take Care of their Health

ALEXANDRIA, Va., May 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The Together Rx Access(R) Program, a free prescription savings program created by leading pharmaceutical companies that is enrolling about 10,000 people every week, has reached its 1.5 million cardholders milestone. The Program, introduced in January of 2005, allows cardholders to access immediate and meaningful savings on hundreds of brand-name prescription medicines and products. Those who have used their Together Rx Access cards have collectively saved more than $66 million on their prescription medicines necessary to stay healthy and to treat many common conditions such as high cholesterol, diabetes, depression, and asthma.

"This milestone means that more than 1.5 million individuals -- including approximately 260,000 children -- who previously may have had difficulty accessing their medications, can now use their Together Rx Access Card to take better care of their health and the health of their families," said Roba Whiteley, executive director of Together Rx Access. "Together Rx Access is committed to finding new and innovative ways of reaching eligible individuals and families, and we will continue to work hard to raise awareness among those who may benefit the most from this free Program."

As is evidenced by the Program's enrollment momentum, the Card is easy to get and use. The quick application process makes it easy for eligible people to sign up for a Together Rx Access Card so they can begin saving on their prescription medicines immediately. The Card is accepted at the majority of pharmacies nationwide and in Puerto Rico. Cardholders simply bring the Card to their pharmacist along with their prescription, and the savings are calculated right at the pharmacy counter. There are no enrollment costs, monthly dues or hidden charges.

"The Together Rx Access Card has been a lifesaver for me and my family. I have been using the Card for a couple years now, and I'm always amazed by the significant amount of savings on our prescriptions," said Tinamarie Smart, a cardholder who lives in California. "My daughter takes asthma medication regularly and before the Card, it was a struggle to keep up with refilling her prescription. Now, with the Together Rx Access Card, her medication is more affordable and I can use the money saved towards other important purchases."

Healthcare Leaders, Patient Advocates and Legislators Support Program

The support of influential leaders and organizations in the public and private sectors -- including many healthcare professional groups -- has been important to the success of the Together Rx Access Program. Over the past few years, the Program has garnered support from hundreds of healthcare leaders and patient advocacy organizations. The American Medical Association (AMA) is one such organization.

"Expanding access to healthcare and prescription drugs for America's patients has long been a top priority for the American Medical Association. The inability to afford healthcare causes many uninsured men, women and children to put off taking necessary medications, and with the Together Rx Access program millions of uninsured Americans now have access to the prescription medications they need to get and stay healthy," said Michael D. Maves, MD, MBA, Executive Vice President, CEO, American Medical Association. "We applaud Together Rx Access for its significant role in working toward the common goal of increasing access to healthcare for all Americans."

In addition, the Together Rx Access Program has been extremely well- received by state governments and legislators across the United States. In fact, nearly 80 legislators have hosted town hall meetings and participated in other information sessions to help spread the word about the benefits of the Program to community leaders and constituents.

New Insights about the Uninsured

"Since the launch of Together Rx Access, we have gained new and important insights about people without insurance that have helped shape and focus our educational and enrollment efforts," explained Ms. Whiteley. "Sharing these lessons with others, including community leaders, healthcare professionals, legislators, and advocacy groups, has been instrumental in expanding prescription access for uninsured people across the country."

One of the most important learnings is that there is no "one size fits all" approach when communicating with the uninsured population, who represent a broad range of diverse individuals and families. Additional key Program learnings include the knowledge that:

-- Women tend to be more involved than men in making decisions about

family healthcare;

-- Those over 40 years of age are much more engaged in healthcare than

their younger counterparts; and

-- Many of the uninsured are web users as evidenced by the success of

online enrollment.

Together Rx Access credits one-on-one communications with helping to sustain the Program's momentum. This method has proven extremely effective in engaging individuals and families who are uninsured. A personal conversation or assistance in completing the application reassures potential cardholders of the Program benefits and often helps answer common questions.

About Together Rx Access

The Together Rx Access Card was created by leading pharmaceutical companies to help hardworking Americans and their families gain access to immediate and meaningful savings on prescription products right at their neighborhood pharmacy. Most cardholders save 25 to 40 percent(1) on brand- name prescription products. More than 300 brand-name prescription products are included in the Program.(2) Savings are also available on a wide range of generics. Medicines in the Program include those used to treat high cholesterol, diabetes, depression, asthma, and many other common conditions. The Card is free to get and free to use.

To qualify for the free Together Rx Access Card, applicants cannot be eligible for Medicare or have public or private prescription drug coverage. To be eligible, household income of less than $30,000 for a single person or $60,000 for a family of four (income eligibility is adjusted for family size) is required. Applicants must be legal residents of the United States or Puerto Rico.

Together Rx Access also directs individuals to the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA), a clearinghouse for more than 475 public and private assistance programs, including 180 offered by pharmaceutical companies. Those who are eligible for the Together Rx Access Card may qualify for additional savings on prescription medicines, or even free medicines, through other patient assistance programs in the PPA. The PPA also connects people to free health clinics in their community.

The companies participating in the Together Rx Access Program include Abbott Laboratories; Bristol-Myers Squibb Company; GlaxoSmithKline; Janssen, L.P.; Johnson & Johnson Wound Management, a Division of ETHICON, Inc.; King Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; LifeScan, Inc.; McNeil Pediatrics, a Division of McNeil-PPC, Inc.; Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation; Ortho Biotech Products, L.P.; Ortho-McNeil, Inc.; Ortho-McNeil Neurologics, Inc.; OrthoNeutrogena, a Division of Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical, Inc.; Ortho Women's Health & Urology, a Division of Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical, Inc.; Pfizer Inc; PriCara, a Unit of Ortho-McNeil, Inc.; sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC.; Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Inc.; TAP Pharmaceutical Products Inc.; Tibotec Therapeutics, a Division of Ortho Biotech Products, L.P.; and Vistakon Pharmaceuticals, LLC.

For more information about the Together Rx Access Card and to enroll in the Program, contact Together Rx Access at 1-800-966-0407, or visit TogetherRxAccess.com.

(1) Each cardholder's savings depend on such factors as the particular

drug purchased, amount purchased, and the pharmacy where purchased.

Participating companies independently set the level of savings offered

and the products included in the program. Those decisions are subject

to change.

(2) Visit TogetherRxAccess.com for the most current list of brand-name

medicines and products.

Together Rx Access and the Together Rx Access logo are trademarks of Together Rx Access, LLC. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.


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SOURCE Together Rx Access
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