Over the years the price of prescription drugs has skyrocketed, with most averaging anywhere between $50 and $100. With many patients needing three or four medications, prescription drug costs for some can easily span anywhere from $500 to $600 a month.
"And when these patients receive their $200, $300 or $900 a month if they are fortunate, they can't afford to buy the medicine and also provide for themselves," says Certified Nurse Practitioner Delores Williams.
In fact, in many cases Williams says senior citizens on fixed incomes are forced to choose between buying prescription drugs or groceries.
Lily Lancaster from Lawrence knows all too well about the high costs of medicine. In all, she has ten prescriptions.
"I worked all my life for social security and Medicare and then we have insurance and that doesn't even pay anything on our medication."
Lancaster is one of many people now receiving her prescriptions free of charge, thanks to programs set up by pharmaceutical companies.
According to healthcare officials most, if not all, pharmaceutical companies have programs designed to provide free or reduced priced prescription drugs to people who qualify.
"So, by having this program they can buy their food. Have the medicine they need and be controlled," says Nurse Williams.
On Wednesday, May 28, a free Health Expo will be held at Union Station from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Pharmaceutical representatives will be on hand to answer questions about available programs.
For more information call 703-4429.