Patient assistance programs help low-income, those without insurance, or those who cannot afford their insurance co-pays get free or low-cost, brand-name medications and treatment they need.

Assistance programs are sponsored by pharmaceutical companies, doctors, patient advocacy organizations, civic groups, and nonprofit organizations.

Many resources exist to help hepatitis C patients and their families get the proper medical and treatment assistance they need. Before you can apply for patient assistance, you will need to take the following necessary steps.

7 Steps Before Applying for Patient Assistance

  1. Be seen by a physician for diagnosis and documented recommendation for medical treatment and hepatitis C treatment.
  2. Know the name of the hepatitis C treatment that is recommended and prescribed for you.
  3. If you have insurance, get approval for treatment, and find out your out-of-pocket costs or co-pay, if you cannot afford these costs, you can apply to a patient assistance program for help. If you do not have insurance, you can apply to many of the patient assistance programs available to get help for the entire cost of hepatitis C treatment.
  4. Your doctor’s office or specialty pharmacy may be able to recommend a specific patient assistance program depending on your need. Ask for suggestions. Also, see our top Patient Assistance Program listing here at Life Beyond Hepatitis C.
  5. Ask your doctor’s office if they help with processing claims for patient assistance programs or if you need to contact them directly to apply.
  6. If more than one grant is needed to cover treatment costs, you can apply to more than one PAP (patient assistance program).
  7. If one resource is not able to help you, seek another assistance program to apply until you find the help you need. Be proactive and persistent. The right help is out there for you.

Many pharmaceutical companies offer PAP’s (patient assistance programs). It is important for health care providers, patients, and caregivers to research and understands the eligibility criteria and application process for specific PAPs as they differ considerably from one program to another.

Program Requirements

  • Patients have limited or no prescription drug coverage from private or public sources. If you have coverage and cannot afford your insurance co-pay you can still be eligible.
  • Patients must have a financial need based on their set income and asset limitations. Some programs may require proof of income or employment.
  • Most programs require proof of U.S. residence or citizenship (other countries outside of the U.S. may have patient assistance programs or different requirements, check with your doctor’s office for information if you live outside of the U.S.)

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This entry was originally published on Life Beyond Hepatitis C on January 27, 2021 and is reprinted with permission.