-- Millions Eligible to Participate in Together Rx Access™ Card Program --
New Brunswick, NJ (January 11, 2005) - The U.S. pharmaceutical companies of the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies, plus nine other U.S. pharmaceutical companies, have launched the Together Rx Access™ Card, a new initiative that provides savings to many uninsured Americans right at the pharmacy counter on a wide range of prescription products. Enrollment began on January 11, 2005.
The Together Rx Access™ Card provides savings of about 25 to 40 percent, and sometimes more, on more than 275 brand name prescription drugs and other prescription products, including most of the prescription medicines made by the Johnson & Johnson U.S operating companies. In addition, patients will be eligible to get savings on LifeScan's diabetes meters and test strips. A wide range of generic drugs is also available through the program. One hundred percent of the savings provided by the companies go directly to the consumer. Products in the Together Rx Access™ program treat diseases and disorders including diabetes, high cholesterol, cancer, asthma and depression. More than 40,000 pharmacies nationwide are participating.
"The Together Rx Access™ Card will make a positive difference in the lives of millions of American families who lack prescription drug coverage by helping them receive the medicines they need," said William C. Weldon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Johnson & Johnson. "Our participation in Together Rx Access™ continues Johnson & Johnson's tradition of providing drugs at significant savings or free for people without the means to pay for them."
More than 45 million Americans, including 8.4 million children, do not have prescription drug coverage. According to a 2003 report from the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, approximately eight out of 10 Americans without health care coverage are in families that are actively employed, working at full-time jobs or a series of part-time jobs that do not offer health insurance. About 80 percent of the 45 million uninsured are eligible for the benefits of the Together Rx Access™ Card.
People who qualify for the Together Rx Access™ Card program can enroll immediately free of charge by calling 800 444-4106 or visiting www.TogetherRxAccess.com. Patients can start accessing savings in February, 2005.
To qualify for the card, applicants must be legal U.S. residents under age 65, not eligible for Medicare and have no public or private prescription drug coverage. Eligibility is also based on income; individuals and families will qualify if their income is up to 300 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. For example, a single person with an income of $30,000 or less and a family of four with an income of $60,000 or less will qualify. (Hawaii and Alaska have different levels.)
Additionally, people enrolling in Together Rx Access™ will be automatically notified if they are eligible for further savings - and, in some cases, free medicines - through company Patient Assistance Programs.
The Patient Assistance Programs administered by Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical companies in the U.S. provided medicines free to more than 200,000 American patients in 2003. While eligibility requirements may vary, the Patient Assistance Programs generally offer free medication to patients with incomes up to 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
"We are committed to ensuring that Americans who lack prescription drug coverage have access to our medicines," said Christine Poon, worldwide chairman of Medicines and Nutritionals for Johnson & Johnson. "This initiative among the companies of Together Rx Access™, pharmacists and patient and physician groups is a major step toward meeting that need."
The companies of Together Rx Access™, L.L.C., are Abbott Laboratories, AstraZeneca, Aventis, a member of the sanofi-aventis Group, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, GlaxoSmithKline, members of the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Pfizer Inc, Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America and TAP Pharmaceutical Products Inc.
The range of savings reflects the mix of savings programs presently offered by the various companies. Actual consumer savings may vary depending on the pharmacy's customary pricing for the specific medicine and the savings program offered by the company that makes it. Each company independently sets its own level of savings and selects which products are included in the program, and its decisions are subject to change.
The Johnson & Johnson companies participating in the program include Janssen Pharmaceutica Products, L.P., Janssen Ortho-McNeil Primary Care, Ortho-McNeil Neurology, McNeil Consumer & Specialty Pharmaceuticals, a division of McNeil-PPC, Inc., OrthoNeutrogena, a divison of Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceuticals, Inc., VISTAKON® Pharmaceuticals, LLC, and LifeScan, Inc.
In introducing the Together Rx Access™ Card, the companies in Together Rx Access™, L.L.C., are applying their experience from launching the successful Together Rx Card, which has so far helped more than 1.5 million Americans over the age of 65 save more than $700 million on prescription drugs.