Drugs are working, insurance plan is ending

I was getting treatment for anorexia and making much progress.  Then, I turned 26 and had to give up my health insurance from my parents’ plan.  COBRA coverage was outrageously expensive.  What can I do to keep getting my medications?  They cost almost $500 a month and there is no generic.

Wants to Stay On Track

Dear Wants to Stay On Track,

I’m glad to hear that your treatment is going well.  Your dilemma is a common one: you get started on a medicine that helps and then your insurance changes or ends.

The drug manufacturer’s website will have information about their “assistance” programs.  These programs give medicines to people who qualify, either for free or for a low cost.  Different drug makers have different standards for who qualifies; you will be able to get all of this information online or from their customer service center.

If you are uninsured for more than two months, when you get new health insurance, it won’t cover these medicines for up to a year.  You will be considered to have a “pre-existing condition”, which the new plan does not have to pay for during your first 12 months.  So, even after you get insurance, you may still need the drug manufacturer’s program.

Best wishes for your continued recovery!

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Linda Riddell

About Linda Riddell

A published author and health policy analyst with 25 years’ experience, Linda Riddell's goal is to alleviate the widespread ailment of not knowing what your health plan can do for you.