The “FamilyWize” card is being offered through a national relationship with the non-profit FamilyWize Parnership.
Virtually every pharmacy in Acadia, Vermilion, St. Martin and Lafayette parishes is accepting the card, which has no usage or age limits, income requirements or registration forms and can be used immediately.
Dan Barnes, co-chair of the FamilyWize Partnership, Dan Barnes of Lehigh Valley, Pa., said, “The goal of the FamilyWize® partnership is to reduce the cost of medicine for children, families and individuals by $100 million in five years. We believe that stronger, healthier and happier people make healthier, better communities and a stronger, gentler nation.”
Sarah H. Berthelot, chief of philanthropy for United Way of Acadiana, said persons interested in using the card should approach their pharmacist about participation.
The savings on the cost of the medicine is provided by the more than 53,000 participating local pharmacies that have agreed voluntarily to accept prices for medications that are close to the prices they make available to large insurance companies and employers. All other program costs are provided by in-kind donations from the program sponsors and by part of the processing fee included in the cost of the medicine.
“We know that in the past two years, over 40 percent of people in the United Sates have either skipped filling a prescription or reduced doses because the medicine was too expensive. For us here in Acadiana, we realize that every day people are making choices between their meds and other basic needs,” Berthelot said.
People with online access can print a card for themselves at unitedwayofacadiana.org.
Otherwise, cards can be acquired at library branches in the parishes and at health units.
No personal information is required or exchanged to obtain a card.
Berthelot points out FamilyWize is not insurance. Rather, it is a program that offers immediate discounts on prescription drugs at participating pharmacies.
To participate, a person simply presents his or herr card with each prescription from the doctor to the participating pharmacy at the time of purchase to receive discounts averaging 20% off the pharmacy’s usual and customary retail price of prescription drugs, with the highest savings on generic drugs.
A participant’s cost for medication will be the discount price offered through the program, or the pharmacy’s usual and customary retail price, whichever is lower.
This means the consumer ise assured the lowest price in that store. If the pharmacy’s customary price is lower, there is no savings or discount.
FamilyWize cards are primarily for people with no health insurance or prescription coverage but can also be used when people have to buy medicine not covered by their health insurance, Medicaid, Medicare or VA benefits. The cards even include prescription pet medications when they are purchased at a pharmacy.