Get Help Paying for Medicare and Prescriptions

Here’s the Arthritis Foundation guide to private and government programs that help with the cost of Medicare Part D coverage and Medicare prescriptions.


More Arthritis Foundation resources:

Financial Aid Organizations That Help Pay for Your Medication

Pharmaceutical Company Programs That Help Lower the Cost of Medication


Private Programs and Resources

Patient Access Network Foundation
866-316-PANF (866-316-7263)
This foundation provides annual allocations to help cover out-of-pocket costs related to prescriptions (co-payment, deductible or co-insurance) for low-income patients with specific diagnoses. Maximum annual allocations vary by diagnosis (ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis: $3,800/year; uveitis: $1,500/year). Patient must be on Medicare, and Medicare must cover the medication for which assistance is needed. 

Medicare Rights Center
This private organization helps people in need who are on Medicare find financial assistance through such programs as Medicare Part D Extra Help, a federal program that helps pay Medicare prescription drug costs. There is also an interactive tool to guide people to the best Medicare assistance program.

Government Programs and Resources

Medicare Savings Programs
State-based programs help people with limited income pay Medicare premiums, and may pay Medicare deductibles and coinsurance.

Medicare Extra Help
Extra Help is a government program that helps people with limited income pay Medicare prescription drug program costs, such as premiums, deductibles and co-insurance. Apply through the Social Security Administration.

Medicaid and Medicare – Dual Eligibility
Some people qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid, called dual eligibility. Access your state’s Medicaid website to learn more.

State Pharmaceutical Assistance Programs (SPAPs)
About 20 states have prescription financial assistance programs for low-income residents. Each has its own eligibility requirements, and program names vary by state. Many require enrollment in the Medicare prescription drug benefit (Part D) and application for Medicare Extra Help. SPAPs generally pay or help pay Medicare drug premiums and cost-sharing, as well as costs in the coverage gap, sometimes only for certain diagnoses. Some may also pay for drugs that are excluded from Medicare drug coverage or are not included in your Medicare drug plan’s formulary.


Updated 1-27-2015

The Arthritis Foundation is the leading organization 
providing support and funding research to improve the 
lives of individuals with arthritis. You can help!