I spoke to my coordinator today, and got a little bit more information about the Prograf Value Card Program that I mentioned in my last post. She told me that she would get me in touch with the clinic’s social worker so I could get setup with the program.
I don’t have the full details yet, but she did say that it is an assistance program set up by Astelas since many of the Transplant clinics are recommending that their patients not use the generic form of Prograf when it comes out. Yes, you read that correctly. I was specificaly told to not use the generic version of Prograf when it becomes available later this year. The reasoning for this is that the potency levels are not expected to be the same, or something like that; and since it is an essential drug for so many, they don’t want to risk it? I’m not sure about this bit. The cynical side of me thinks that is a crock of bull, and it’s just the big pharma company getting their way. The other side can see where hey would be cautious, and I for one would be very happy not to have my life goofed up by a new drug.
The Value Card Program will likely work like a debit card, so you can just use it every time you pick up your Prograf script. It is also only targeted to those who have private health care, and not those who are on government assisted programs – whether or not that would include the VA, I don’t know for sure but would assume as much.
There are still a lot of questions and unclear aspects just yet, but I will post more information as I get it. In the meantime, I would encourage anyone who is interested to contact the social worker attached to your hospital or clinic.