Strong and struggling
I lost my job in May 2012 and my insurance. Thanks to MS Lifelines I still receive Rebif. My anxiety and depression are taking a toll on me and sleep has become a stranger. Florida could care less about their poor. How can I get my anti-anxiety & depression meds without insurance or money?
I really need help.
So sorry to hear about your situation. I've been living without insurance for about 5 years now. It's no fun worrying if I'll have enough money to even afford the reduced price meds I have now for HBP.
With a condition like MS, the stress from worrying about how you can still get your meds can make your MS worse. You don't need this.
One thing you can do is check out public assistance in your state. Medicaid is available for low-income families, however you usually have to have children. There's also sometimes a program in place called medicaid waiver for those with disabilities.
If you stopped working because of your MS, have you applied for disability yet? You may want to try this. This will allow you to have medicaid for the disabled. Also if you apply for SSI (supplemental security income), at the same time, you may be able to get monetary help as well as medicaid insurance.
Another thing you may want to do is check for programs like Access to Care. In Ohio this is not necessarily healthcare, but doctors on the program provide free care for patients like us who have no insurance or income.
There are also free clinics which may take a little research to find. If you have an InfoLine in your state, they might be your first place to look and ask questions.
Your other option would be to contact the makers of your medication. Look up the names and find out who manufactures them, then go to their website and find their financial assistance page. Call the number provided and explain your situation.
They may be able to provide the medication free of charge or at a significantly reduced price until you are able to pay for it again. There may also be some programs like OhioRX that will also reduce the costs of your medication.
I get my medication at $4.00 per 30day supply (if you take more than 1/day the price may go up to say $8.00, but most times that's doable. Of course this depends on the number of medications you have. I only have 4 and one I cut in half so I only need to purchase it once every other month.
The drawback to this program, though, is that you have to make sure your medication is on the $4.00 list. Several times I've had to change prescriptions because the name brand would be there but the dosage would be wrong. Hopefully your doctor will know how to check the list and get it right the first time.
I hope all of this info has been helpful to you. I know it may seem like a lot to take in and deal with. If you need help, hopefully you have people around you who can help make phone calls, write things down, or do research.
It may not seem like it, but there are ways around a system that doesn't "care less about it's poor". Try looking up the Center for Independent Living for Florida. They are advocates for the disabled, and if nothing more, they should be able to point you in the right direction to get help.
Also, try contacting the South Florida National MS Society. (Links will open a new window.) They were very helpful in the beginning when Cir first stopped working.
With a family of four, we had to figure out how to keep going without any income. Public assistance may feel embarrassing, but sometimes you have to do what you need to do until you can figure out a way on your own.
Again, Cd, I hope some of this helps. Take care, and try not to worry. I know that's difficult given the circumstances.
Take care and if you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask.