Rx Partnership: Free Prescriptions for Virginia’s Uninsured
Rx Partnership creates a streamlined and cost-effective process that helps connect pharmaceutical companies to free clinics and community health centers in Virginia, resulting in the shipment of free medication for eligible, uninsured people who need it. Patients suffering from a variety of acute and chronic illnesses are able to access the medication they need, free and without a wait.
Rx Partnership dispensed over $21.2 million worth of free medication to 23 free clinics and community health centers around Virginia in 2012.
In 2012, Impact Makers financial and in-kind technical support translated into more than 9,954 donated prescriptions for 1,851 low-income, uninsured individuals throughout the state.
Who is Rx Partnership (RxP)?
RxP is an innovative public/private partnership created to increase access to free prescription medications for Virginia’s eligible uninsured.
What does RxP do?
RxP solicits free medications in bulk from pharmaceutical companies and arranges for their distribution directly to nonprofit, licensed affiliate pharmacies which it credentials and monitors. These pharmacies are typically operated by free clinics and community health centers.
Who receives RxP Medications?
To be credentialed, each Affiliate must demonstrate that it utilizes a specific intake process to determine that patients reside in the Commonwealth of Virginia, have combined household income at or below 200% of federal poverty level and are without any prescription drug coverage. Periodic site reviews, annual reporting, and training sessions are conducted to confirm compliance.
Serving the Uninsured
Rx Partnership (RxP) addresses the need for prescription medications for those Virginians who have no health insurance, or whose health insurance does not cover prescription drugs. Statewide, more than 544,367 adults (11%) ages 19-64 currently have no health insurance and live below 200% of the federal poverty level. Locally in Richmond, 25,584 (18%) are uninsured and living 200% below the federal poverty level.
In Virginia alone, more than 1 million people currently have no health insurance. While paying for prescription medication is a burden for many, it is impossible for some. In fact, according to the Virginia Health Care Foundation (VHCF), more than one in four (27%) uninsured Virginians goes without needed medications because they cannot afford to pay for their prescriptions.
Who are the Uninsured?
Most of the uninsured are low-income, hardworking adults who cannot afford the high cost of health care and prescription medication. According to VHCF, more than two-thirds (70%) of uninsured people work full-time or come from families in which at least one person works full-time. Low-income people have the greatest risk of being uninsured; one out of every three people from low-income families with a full-time worker is uninsured. The number of uninsured rises every year, and the high cost of health care makes it increasingly difficult for these hard-working adults to access the health care and prescription medication they desperately need.
Facts about Virginia’s Uninsured from the VHCF:
- Most of the uninsured are under the age of 65. (Medicare provides health insurance for most people 65 and over)
- Virginia’s uninsured represent diverse ethnic and racial backgrounds: 47% white non-Hispanic, 24% black, 20% Hispanic, 7% Asian/Pacific Islander and 3% are from other groups
- The overwhelming majority of Virginians without insurance are U.S. citizens (78.6%)
Effects on the Health of the Community
The lack of health insurance has tremendous, negative repercussions in our communities and across the nation. Patients who are unable to afford their prescriptions skip doses, split pills or otherwise fail to comply with the medication regimen that would improve their condition. This causes conditions that could have been controlled to worsen and to cause additional issues for the patient. Longer term, the consequences include extended needs for all types of medical care, such as costly emergency room visits and hospitalizations; increased time lost from work; decreased quality of life; late diagnosis of diseases; and even shortened life spans. In fact, according to the Families USA report Dying for Coverage in Virginia, an estimated more than 10 working-age Virginians die each week due to lack of health insurance.
Letters About Impact
Read letters from Rx Partnership citing the impact that Impact Makers’ contributions have on their organization.
- 2012 RxPartnership Letter of Appreciation
- 2011 RxPartnership Letter of Appreciation
- 2010 RxPartnership Letter of Appreciation