NAMI has recently started endorsing the Partnership
for Prescription Assistance , a new program that seeks to boost
enrollment in existing Patient Assistance Programs by helping consumers
identify and apply for programs for which they may be eligible. This
may be a good place to start if you are unfamiliar with Assistance
Programs that might work for you - however, we don't yet know how
successful the Partnership is at enrolling people in good programs,
or how much they may charge for their service. If anyone has experiences
to share about the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (good or
bad), please email the administration at: szwebmaster@.
Visit their website ( http:// ) or call 1-888-477-2669 if you are interested.
Free information sites about PAPs - include databases searchable by state, medication, or company name
Nonadherence to medications is a significant problem; in a recent study, 74 percent of patients discontinued their medication within 18 months. 16 Nonadherence often leads to relapse of symptoms. Atypical antipsychotics were initially thought to help with adherence because of their lower rate of neurologic side effects. However, meta-analyses have found that drop-out rates and relapse prevention are no better with atypical antipsychotics than with neuroleptics. 17 , 18 Meta-analyses also have found that in terms of symptom scores and drop-out rates, atypical antipsychotics are better than high dosages (., more than 12 mg per day) of haloperidol (Haldol); there was no advantage when the dosage of haloperidol was less than 12 mg per day. 17 In other words, many of the perceived benefits of atypical antipsychotics actually were a result of the excessive doses of first-generation antipsychotics that were used for comparison in randomized trials. 17 Evidence suggests that delays in initiating therapy with antipsychotics may result in a lifetime deleterious effect on psychotic episodes and social adjustment. 19 , 20 If initiation of antipsychotic therapy is delayed because of limited psychiatric resources, family physicians should consider starting medications instead.
Patient assistance programs (PAPs) are programs created by drug companies, such as JOHNSON & JOHNSON PATIENT ASSISTANCE FOUNDATION, to offer free or low cost drugs to individuals who are unable to pay for their medication. These Programs may also be called indigent drug programs, charitable drug programs or medication assistance programs. Most of the best known and most prescribed drugs can be found in these programs. All of the major drug companies have patient assistance programs, although every company has different eligibility and application requirements.