A little recent number crunching on our part yielded this statistic:
The average annual benefit this past year for our United Way RxRelief Prescription Assistance Program clients was $4,017 in medications (retail cost) -- this represents 30% of the average annual income of our clients ($13,186).
This is how we have an impact on our community.
In order to qualify for assistance from this program, individuals must have a chronic, long term condition like diabetes, heart disease or mental illness that requires medication, and they must be uninsured.
They no longer have to choose between paying their electric bill or paying for medications. They are staying healthier because they are taking their medications regularly. This reduces the need for emergency medical care, which reduces the financial burden on hospitals treating uninsured patients, or on the families facing insurmountable medical bills. Because they are healthy, they miss less work, so they have a steadier income and their employer has a consistent employee.
Community Health and Self-Sufficiency are two of our impact areas (the other is School Readiness). This program, in which our employee, Medication Assistance Caseworker Helen Frye, spends her time mostly at the Charlottesville Free Clinic and Region Ten Community Services Board, as well as at Martha Jefferson Hospital's satellite offices, demonstrates how we can leverage our resources to have a very large impact.
When you are considering where to make your charitable donations this year, please consider how our United Way uses your donations to maximize the ways we can have a positive impact on individuals’ lives and strengthen our community.
Posted by Kim Connolly
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