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Laid Off? Maybe Pharma Will Give You a Hand

Posted May 19th, 2009 by Trisha Torrey

Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, makers of prescription drugs like Lipitor, Lyrica, Zoloft, Norvasc and dozens of others has announced that it has established a new assistance program for people who have lost their jobs due to the recession.

If you have been laid off since January 1, 2009, and take any of 70 Pfizer primary care drugs on a regular basis, you may be eligible for this new program called MAINTAIN  (Medicines Assistance for Those who Are in Need.)  You may enroll until December 31, 2009, and coverage may be continued, as long as you still qualify, for up to one year.

Here are the eligibility requirements:

  • Resident of the United States
  • Loss of employment since January 1, 2009
  • Prescribed and taking a Pfizer medicine for at least 3 months prior to becoming unemployed and enrolling in the program
  • Lack of insurance and prescription drug coverage
  • Proof of unemployment
  • Can attest to financial hardship

Here’s some additional information not found in the Pfizer press release, but which may be of interest to you:

·         The MAINTAIN program is identical to other Pfizer programs and can be very helpful for people who need help paying for the various drugs Pfizer makes.  Whether or not you are eligible for the MAINTAIN program you may be eligible for others. You can learn more about other Pfizer programs right here at Patient 

·         If you have chosen to opt-in to COBRA coverage, including the subsidized COBRA 2009 program, then you will not be eligible for this Pfizer program.

·         If the drugs you take are not Pfizer drugs, you may wish to review the many assistance programs offered by the companies that make the drugs you take.  They are all listed here at the website.

·         Also, watch the news for announcements of additional pharmaceutical companies that may offer special programs for people who have been laid off.


About the author

Trisha Torrey is Every Patient's Advocate. She is a newspaper columnist, radio talk show host, national speaker, and the guide to patient empowerment at

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