Drug program ready to debut

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 10, 2005

The Selma Times-Journal

Representatives of the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA) traveled to the Dallas County Health Department Thursday afternoon via the Help is Here Express, a traveling bus designed to help low income families afford prescription medicines across the United States.

The PPA is the largest private-sector effort to connect uninsured or underinsured people to patient assistant programs, many of which provide medicines for free or nearly free.

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Former U.S. Congressman Billy Tauzin, president and CEO of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), launched the program in April. He is satisfied with the program’s success thus far and hopes the Help is Here Express will take it to new heights.

State Sen. Hank Sanders was in attendance, along with Bob Lochamy of the Partnership for Prescription Assistance of Alabama, Dallas County Health Director Ashvin Parikh and Perry County Health Department Director Frances Ford.

Sanders said the arrival of the Help is Here Express is a plus for all Alabamians and commends Tauzin for his vision to create a program for the less fortunate.

Parikh said the program would provide a great benefit to the Black Belt region and urges those who cannot afford prescription medicines to apply for aid.

The Help is Here Express’ next stop on its cross-country tour is Bayou La Batre.