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Boehringer Ingelheim to help indigent. (RX/Marketplace).

RIDGEFIELD, Conn. -- Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation Inc. (BICF) is launching an assistance program for indigent patients, offering them free prescription drugs.

The program, to be administered by the newly formed foundation, is expected to particularly benefit older Americans and HIV/AIDS patients.

"As a maker of lifesaving medicines, we want to help patients who cannot afford their medicines," explains Pamela DeMala, BICF president. "We've developed a program to give those patients free medications and to get the drugs into their hands quickly and efficiently.

"We fully support establishment of a prescription drug benefit through Medicare and hope that BICF will provide relief to indigent patients as Congress continues working to enact such legislation."

Under the program certain Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals Inc. products will be provided free of charge to patients who meet certain eligibility criteria.

Among those requirements are that patients do not have prescription coverage under a private, government or employee insurance plan; ineligible for prescription assistance through Medicaid; and have annual income equal to or lower than 200% of the federal poverty level ($18,100 a year for a family of four, or $36,200 to qualify for the patient assistance program).

Meanwhile for persons needing to take the company's HIV/AIDS drug Viramune, annual income must be equal to or lower than $25,000. For two or more members of a family the income level would be up to $40,000. These patients must also citizens or legal resident of the United States.

No copayments or membership card will be required, nor will applicants be subjected to a review of their assets. Applications are available through a toll-free number.

Approved applicants will receive a year's worth of medication that will be distributed in three-month supplies to that individual's health care provider.

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Title Annotation:Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation Inc.
Publication:Chain Drug Review
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:4EUGE
Date:Oct 28, 2002
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