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No Matter What

Compassion and determination help patient access treatment and resources

Judy Rodriguez, Patient Care Coordinator.

Judy Rodriguez, Patient Care Coordinator.

At the OneWorld Pharmacy, Patient Care Coordinators, including Judy Rodriguez, dedicate their days to helping uninsured patients apply for programs to afford prescriptions that would be unattainable for many patients due to the high cost.

Oftentimes high-cost medications are for illnesses that are life threatening without treatment.

“When I first met with Lisa, she had recently been diagnosed with Hepatitis C and was prescribed Epclusa for treatment,” said Judy.

Hepatitis C is an infection caused by a virus that can cause inflammation of the liver and sometimes severe liver damage. Without insurance, Epclusa costs around $30,000 per month, with the average treatment being three months long.

“Lisa also mentioned that she recently lost her important documents, belongings and her entire home due to damage,” said Judy. “I didn’t want her to have to wait any longer than she already had to, so I recommended she apply for Medicaid to jump start the acceptance process for the assistance program.”

Patients who are considered to be low-income, or are the only person in their household, oftentimes have to apply for Medicaid and be denied in order to be eligible for the assistance program for Epclusa.

Without a denial letter, the wait time can increase and treatment can be delayed.

A room with shelves of medicine

Inside of the OneWorld Pharmacy.

Judy referred Lisa to the OneWorld Marketplace for help with her Medicaid application. A few weeks later, Judy received a phone call from Lisa.

“I told Lisa to let me know when she got her letter from Medicaid stating her approval or denial so we could begin the application process for the Epclusa assistance program,” said Judy. “She told me she was so glad that I encouraged her to apply for Medicaid because not only did she get approved for Medicaid, but she also got approved for food stamps. She was so excited, and so was I.”

With Medicaid, Lisa was able to afford the Epclusa prescription and begin the Hepatitis C treatment.

“I’ve been a OneWorld patient for nearly 13 years, and the staff have always been caring and kind,” said Lisa. “I have a good relationship with Dr. Donna Faber, Family Medicine Physician, and I’m very thankful for the care and help I’ve received.”

Judy said she did not know if Lisa would be approved for Medicaid and was thrilled to learn that Lisa received Medicaid approval and additional support and resources as a result of applying.

“OneWorld is full of people who want to help others in need,” said Judy. “No matter who it is or what help is needed, we don’t deny anyone. We will always help them get the care they need and deserve.”

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