Representatives from one of the nation’s largest drug companies are in Iowa promoting a discount program for the uninsured. Starting today (Friday), anyone without health care insurance can get free- or reduced-price medications from Pfizer. Pfizer spokesperson Kelly Boryca says anyone in an uninsured family with an annual income of less than 31-thousand dollars qualifies for free Pfizer meds. Significant discounts are available for families with incomes between 31-thouand and 45-thousand dollars a year. Boryca says “this is significant. It’s not a make-believe benefit. It’s true savings for the patients.” If your family earns more than 45-thousand a year, you can still get a discount on Pfizer meds, of about 15 percent, if you’re uninsured. Boryca says it’s easy to reach Pfizer to get the free meds or the discount. You can call a toll-free number — 1-866-706-2400 — and it’s manned by operators who speak both English and Spanish. Or, you can get the benefit on-line at www.pfizerhelpfullanswers.com. Pfizer held a news conference in Iowa to coincide with the nationwide announcement, and state officials were on hand. Stephen Gleason, an M.D. who is Governor Tom Vilsack’s chief of staff, praised the company. Gleason says since Pfizer is one of the largest drug companies in the world, its discount drug card for the uninsured will be quite valuable since it’ll cover a wide range of drugs. Gleason did not repeat some of the criticism his boss, the governor, has lobbed at the pharmaceutical industry for how high-priced prescription drugs are in the U-S as compared to Canada. Vilsack has tried to get federal permission to allow state employees to get their prescription medication from Canada.
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