The scary thing about healthcare for many people these days is not knowing how much you will pay out of pocket for you care, even if you have insurance. Access Health Louisiana (AHL), a nonprofit organization, makes healthcare affordable for everyone – insured, underinsured, and uninsured. One of the biggest expenses for many people is the cost of prescription drugs. As a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), AHL wanted to make sure that all patients could get the medications they need without having to sacrifice a utility bill or food.
We opened our own pharmacy in 2018 to offer deep discounts on high-priced medications.
Pharmacist Michael Simmons, PharmD, and his staff handle hundreds of prescriptions daily for patients. After 19 years in the business, Simmons says he always strives to find the best deals for his patients, even if it means getting on the phone with the pharmaceutical companies themselves. “If patients have a hard time finding medication, or their medication is out of their budget, I will call their doctor for a temporary or permanent alternative,” says Simmons. “I can also search for financial solutions such as manufacturer coupons.” This is particularly helpful for HIV patients or patients with other critical illnesses.
Michelle, a Pharmacy tech at Access Health Louisiana Pharmacy, says another reason patients should consider sending their prescriptions over is because AHL offers free home delivery. “A courier service delivers free to your home if you live in the New Orleans, Metairie and Kenner areas. If you live outside the area, you can have your medications delivered free to your door through the U.S. Postal Service.” The same goes for PrEP (Pre-exposure Prophylaxis). “If your doctor sends over a prescription for PrEP, we can have it filled and delivered straight to your door within one to two days depending on where you live. If you live in the area, you can pick it up from our pharmacy as well.” This is extremely convenient for busy millennials and hospitality workers who don’t work the typical 9am to 5pm work day.
Your doctor calls in the prescription, and the prescription gets delivered straight to your door.
Access Health Louisiana Pharmacy staff is trained to use all available resources to help their patients obtain their medications at affordable prices. “The process for getting approved for discounted medications through AHL is simple,” says Michelle. “First, I highly recommend seeing one of our prescribers, then your cost is based off your household size and income.” Staying within network isn’t required, but it does simplify the process if you have a critical illness. “An in-house pharmacy can often better assist patients and meet their healthcare needs because we have direct access to their physicians and medical records, since everything is within the same network,” adds Pharmacist Simmons. “As part of the patient’s care team, I share information with their primary care physician to help find the best treatment for each patient that meets their financial and medical needs. This requires a more personal involvement in the patient’s care on my part.”
Access Health Louisiana is a proud supporter of the LGBTQ community, and hopes that patients will continue to entrust all aspects of their healthcare needs to them. “We look at each one of our patients as if they are a part of our family and we try to assist them as much as possible in a caring manner,” adds Michelle. To take advantage of the free home delivery service, or to see if your medications can be filled at a lower rate through the Access Health Louisiana Pharmacy, call (985)785-5826, or their toll-free number, (833)556-6290.
Chenier Reynolds-Montz is Director of Outreach & Development for Access Health Louisiana, a registered 501(c)3 organization. She can be reached at email@example.com. For information about our services, log onto our website at accesshealthla.org