Palmetto Physician Magazine (August, 2013)

The Centers for Disease Control reports that Americans spend more on prescription drugs than people in any other country: some $45 billion in out-of-pocket dollars in the last year alone. With that in mind, the South Carolina Drug Card is reminding physicians that their patients who aren't insured or who take prescription drugs that aren't covered by their health insurance plans, can use the South Carolina Drug Card to obtain discounts of up to 80 percent off the retail price for brand and generic FDA-approved medications.

South Carolina Medical Association has been working closely with South Carolina Drug Card to distribute free discount prescription cards to all South Carolinians. The goal of the partnership is to provide additional card distribution channels and create awareness so that all residents will have access to this free statewide prescription assistance program. South Carolina Drug Card was launched to help the uninsured and underinsured residents afford their prescription medications. The program can also be used by people that have health insurance coverage with no prescription benefits, which is common in many health savings accounts (HSA) and high deductible health plans.

"The service provided to the patients of South Carolina through programs like the South Carolina Drug Card are invaluable, and the South Carolina Medical Association is proud to partner with them," said Todd Atwater, SCMA CEO. "Providing a means for those who are uninsured or underinsured to obtain prescriptions that may otherwise be unobtainable is just one small step to making South Carolina a healthier state."

Another unique component of the program is their preferred pharmacy option. South Carolina Drug Card has chosen CVS/pharmacy as their preferred pharmacy so that residents who don't have access to a computer and can't obtain a hard card, can visit any CVS/pharmacy to have their prescriptions processed through South Carolina Drug Card. Residents can simply reference "South Carolina Drug Card" to have their prescription processed through the program. South Carolina Drug Card is accepted at over 56,000 participating regional and national pharmacies.

"We strongly believe that this is an easy and innovative way to help the residents of South Carolina find affordable prescription options," states Program Director, Brandon Knox.

South Carolina Drug Card has helped residents save over $31 million since its inception in August 2007. You can help by encouraging your patients to print a free South Carolina Drug Card at www.SouthCarolinaDrugCard.com.

South Carolina Drug Card is also available as an app for iPhone and Android. You can search "Free Rx iCard" in the app store.