Partnership for Prescription Assistance Patients Join Montel Williams In Washington, DC to Urge Capitol Hill Support for the Uninsured

Washington, D.C. - The Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA) - In an unprecedented effort sponsored by America's pharmaceutical research companies that has helped nearly four million Americans find ways to access their prescription medicines - sponsored an event in Washington, D.C. to highlight the growing health care crisis facing uninsured individuals and the significant role of patient assistance programs. PPA National Spokesman, Emmy-winning syndicated talk show host Montel Williams, patients from nearly all 50 states who benefit from the program, and other allies joined forces on Capitol Hill to urge members of Congress to find innovative ways to help the country's uninsured.

“America's pharmaceutical research companies remain steadfast in our mission to make sure that patients have access to safe and effective medicines,” said Billy Tauzin, president and CEO of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA). “The Partnership for Prescription Assistance has been a critical access point for millions of individuals across the country that needed help getting their prescription medicines. We encourage members of Congress to join us in getting the word out: help could be just a phone call away.”

The PPA continues its extensive campaign aimed at raising awareness about patient assistance programs among patients, health care providers, community organizations and elected officials. The campaign includes the “Help is Here Express” national bus tour, which consists of two buses criss-crossing the country making stops in all 50 states and more than 1,200 cities across America. Already, more than 1,300 national and local organizations are working with America's pharmaceutical research companies to help spread the word about the PPA.

“Since being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1999, I've developed a greater understanding of how important it is to have access to good doctors, treatments and prescription medicines,” said Montel Williams. “The PPA has been a tremendous resource for millions of patients. We are here today to urge elected officials to work with the private sector to develop innovative ways to help the uninsured. Together, we can make a difference in the health of this nation.”

Since launching the program nationally in April 2005, nearly four million patients have been connected to patient assistance programs that may help them get their medications for free or nearly free. In addition, the PPA provides information on nearly 10,000 free healthcare clinics and has connected more than 144,000 individuals with clinics and health care providers in their communities.

People who need help should call the PPA's toll-free phone number (1-888-4PPA-NOW), where trained operators field calls in more than 150 languages, or visit the easy-to-use Web site (www.pparx.org). Over 2,500 brand-name and generic prescription medicines are available through more than 475 participating patient assistance programs, including more than 180 offered by America's pharmaceutical companies.

Contact: Ed Belkin
202-835-3460