If getting your HIV medications on time through your new health insurance plan worries you, you may have to take a more active role in making sure you get your meds into your hands. With many people in the U.S. changing to new plans under the Affordable Care Act, getting on to Medicaid or having to deal with mail-order pharmacies, there are several ways to make sure you don't experience an interruption in your medication regimen, outlined in a new fact sheet from HIVhealthreform.org.
The five tips are:
- Plan ahead and get a refill before switching plans. "Give yourself some extra time to make sure everything is working by refilling your medications before you make the switch to a new health plan," the fact sheet says.
- Consult your state AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP). "Many [ADAPs] can step in and provide coverage in a pinch, especially if you are leaving ADAP for Medicaid or private insurance," the fact sheet says.
- Talk to your pharmacy. "Many local pharmacies can provide 'bridge supplies' to make sure you get your meds. Two pharmacies, Walgreens and CVS Caremark, announced special transition plans, and others may have similar policies in place," the fact sheet says.
- Check out co-pay assistance programs from HIV drug companies. "If you can't get help from your pharmacy, or can't afford the costs of medications, a pharmaceutical manufacturer assistance program may be able to help," the fact sheet says.
- Contact your health care provider. "Remember, you're not alone," the fact sheet notes. "Your health care provider and case manager are there to help you if you can't get medications."
It is of utmost importance to stay on schedule in terms of HIV medication. You are the best advocate for your health, and that sometimes means having to do more work. What are some ways you make sure to get your meds on time? Share them in the comments section.
Mathew Rodriguez is the editorial project manager for TheBody.com and TheBodyPRO.com.
Follow Mathew on Twitter: @mathewrodriguez.
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