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Through Charities, Drug Makers Help People

Through Charities, Drug Makers Help People

What started out as a perhaps good idea — helping people who can’t afford the drugs they need — has turned into a cruel reinforcement for drug companies to keep their prices for medications artificially high for U.S. citizens.

To cope with rising medical costs, insurers are requiring patients to pay higher premiums and co-payments for drugs. While poor uninsured patients can often get expensive medicine free from drug companies, people with insurance are increasingly finding it difficult to afford these drugs. In response, drug companies are giving money to charities that are specifically set up to help patients pay such costs.

Under this support system, drug-company money keeps patients insured — and keeps insurers paying for the high-priced medicine. […]

The program has grown steadily, now assisting people with 19 different chronic illnesses. Last year, Patient Services [which helps patients pay for drugs they otherwise couldn’t afford] raised $22 million, helping nearly 20,000 patients pay premiums and co-payments. About $17 million of that came from 13 drug companies.

Through Charities, Drug Makers Help People

John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

Dr. John Grohol is the founder & CEO of Psych Central. He is an author, researcher and expert in mental health online, and has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues -- as well as the intersection of technology and human behavior -- since 1992. Dr. Grohol sits on the editorial board of the journal Computers in Human Behavior and is a founding board member and treasurer of the Society for Participatory Medicine. He writes regularly and extensively on mental health concerns, the intersection of technology and psychology, and advocating for greater acceptance of the importance and value of mental health in today's society. You can learn more about Dr. John Grohol here.

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APA Reference
Grohol, J. (2018). Through Charities, Drug Makers Help People. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 19, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Jul 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Jul 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.