Ways to Pay for PsA Meds Without Insurance
Not being able to afford a medicine that may potentially help your psoriatic arthritis (PsA) can be disappointing, but there is hope. There are a variety of treatments for PsA, the most common treatments are topicals, pills, and injections.
These drugs are expensive and can cost anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars. I once used medicine that was $2,800 a month, there was no way I could afford the cost and at the time I was uninsured. Check out these ways you can find medicine to treat your PsA while being uninsured.
Considering a clinical trial for psoriatic arthritis
Right now there are currently 265 clinical trials available for those with psoriatic disease which can be reviewed at Clinicaltrials.gov.
The benefits of clinical trials
Clinical trials involve volunteers, and takes place in a variety of locations…”. Studies are monitored by healthcare professionals. If you don’t have health insurance or can’t afford medicine this is an option you may want to consider. Here are the pros and cons of joining a clinical trial:
The pros of clinical trials include:
- The medicine given during a clinical trial is FREE.
- Free regular doctor visits to help monitor progress and health while in clinical trial.
- Free lab work to monitor health.
- The opportunity to use a highly effective drug before it hits the public.
- You are more likely to use the medicine the correct way since being so closely monitored by health professionals.
- Participants are usually paid for their participation.
- If drug is approved by the FDA, you may be able to continue use of drug for free for up to 1 year.
Determining the negatives
Clinical trials involve medicines that have not yet been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The National Psoriasis Foundation describes clinical trials as, “research study used to determine whether new drugs or treatments are safe and effective.
The cons of clinical trials include:
- You are using a drug not yet approved by the FDA, therefore there are potential side effects still under study and unknown.
- The process may cause you to take a lot more time off from work due to required checkups and lab work.
- Drug may not be approved by FDA and you have to discontinue use, even if it was working for you.
- You may receive a placebo.
- You may not be approved for certain trials depending on the meds you used prior to the study.
How will this opportunity affect my family? Some studies require that you do not get pregnant while in the study. How will this opportunity affect my budget? You may have to take time off from work to make appointments and you might spend more money on gas to get to appointments. Will this interfere with work? You may have to leave work early to make appointments.
Additional medication options
A lot of medications have patient assistance programs. These programs allow patients to receive medicines for free or at a super discounted rate. The amount is determined by the person’s income and insurance status.
I have had the chance to enroll in a patient assistance program for 3 different biologics where the most I paid was $20, one was completely free. Check out the following patient assistance programs for medicines that treat psoriatic disease:
- Johnson and Johnson Patient Assistance Program covers Remicade and Stelara
- Enbrel Support
- Lilly Cares covers Taltz
Find additional ways around insurance
Good Rx is an app that you can download on your phone. It won’t find a medicine that’s free, but it will allow you to search your area for the cheapest prices for prescription meds. You can’t use this app for specialty drugs like injections, but it will be beneficial for drugs that alleviate joint pain associated with PsA.
The app allows you to view the price of drugs when you have insurance and also when you do not have it. You can check the price of a drug before being prescribed it by your doctor.
Have you found ways to afford your medication without insurance? We'd like to hear your story and advice.
Do you have a sleep disorder (eg. insomnia, sleep apnea, RLS) in addition to your PsA?