Five Free Prescription Assistance Programs for Cancer Patients

Free Prescription Assistance Programs for Cancer Patients
This page was originally published September 12, 2021 and updated June 15, 2024.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer, you’re probably all too familiar with the high cost of medications. Treatment can be expensive, and it’s not uncommon for a single prescription to cost hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars. Please take note, however, that there are programs in place to help you get the medications you need for free. These are called prescription assistance programs (PAPs), and they’re offered directly by many pharmaceutical companies. We’ve included an overview of PAPs and five programs that can help you today. For even more programs, please visit our national directory of free prescription programs for cancer patients here. ❤️

What are Prescription Assistance Programs?

Prescription assistance programs are designed to help patients get the medications they need at little or no cost. Many pharmaceutical companies offer these programs, and each program has its own eligibility requirements. However, most programs are available to both insured and uninsured cancer patients who meet certain income guidelines.

How Do Prescription Assistance Programs Work?

Each prescription assistance program has its own application process. However, most programs require that patients submit an application along with proof of income. Once you’ve submitted your application, it will be reviewed by the program’s staff. If you’re approved for the program, you’ll be able to get your medications at no cost.

What Medications are Available Through Prescription Assistance Programs?

Most prescription assistance programs offer a wide variety of medications. However, some programs may have limitations on the types of medications they offer. Be sure to check with the program before you apply to see if they offer the medication you need. If you don’t see the medication you need listed on their website, give them a call and ask about it. The staff will be more than happy to answer any questions you have about the program and help you determine if you’re eligible for assistance.

Five Free Financial Assistance Programs

The five programs below offer cancer-specific medications at no cost to patients who can demonstrate financial need. If the manufacturer you are looking for isn’t listed here, please check our national listings for more. ❤️

1. Takeda Oncology Prescription Assistance

Phone: (844) 817-6468 (Option 2, 8AM-8PM ET M-F)

Takeda’s Here2Assist Program provides medications including Alunbrig, Iclusig, Ninlaro, and Velcade at no cost to those with financial need. This program can help with out-of-pocket costs for those covered by insurance and offers free medications for those who are not. Eligibility is based on income and expenses. Both applications for insured and non-insured can be downloaded here but must be submitted by the physician.

2. Amgen Safety-Net Foundation

Phone: (888) 762-6436 (8AM-8PM M-F ET)

The Amgen Safety-Net Foundation offers financial assistance programs to under- and uninsured patients who’ve been prescribed certain Amgen medications including Aranesp, Blinkcyto, Epogen, Neulasta, Neupogen, Vectibix, and more. To see if your medications are on the list and to apply online for this free assistance program, please visit this link or call (888) 762-6436  (8AM-8PM M-F ET) for help over the phone.

3. Abbvie Patient Assistance Program

Phone: (800) 222-6885 (8:00-8:00 M-F EST)

Provides free AbbVie medications (including Lupron Depot) to cancer patients with financial need who have limited or no health insurance coverage and live in the United States. Eligibility is based on household income and estimated out-of-pocket medical expenses. Look up participating medications and apply online with this link.

4. Merck Patient Assistance Program

Phone: (800) 727-5400 8 AM – 8 PM ET M-F

Provides free Merck prescriptions to those who demonstrate financial need (including Emend, Intron, Keytruda, Sylatron, Temodar, and Zolinza). Eligible patients must live in the US and meet income limits based on household size. Application can be obtained by calling (800) 727-5400 8 AM – 8 PM ET M-F or by downloading the printable PDF version here. For a list of all eligible Merck medications, please check this link.

5. Novartis Patient Assistance Program

Phone: 800-282-7630 8 AM – 8 PM ET M-F

Free access to Novartis medicines for cancer patients experiencing financial hardship (includes Afinitor, Arzerra, Exjade, Ferydak, Femara, Gleevec, and more). This program is available to US residents with limited or no prescription drug coverage. Applicants must be able to provide proof of income that meets financial eligibility requirements. Please visit this link to apply for help.

Get More Free Prescription Assistance

Cancer patients and their families often face financial hardships due to the high cost of treatment. However, there are programs in place to help those in need get the medications they need at little or no cost. If you or a loved one is struggling to pay for treatments, be sure to look into a prescription assistance program today. For more free nationwide prescription assistance programs for cancer patients, please visit the link for our national directory. ❤️

Free Prescription Programs for Cancer Patients

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