Medication – Kepplah Wed, 29 Jun 2022 02:01:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Medication – Kepplah 32 32 Free prescription drug service sees growing number of working customers Wed, 29 Jun 2022 02:01:07 +0000

NEWPORT, Ky. — Kellee Yelton was a receptionist at a doctor’s office in Norwood and had health insurance in January 2020 when she went on short-term disability to have foot surgery.

“Then the pandemic hit,” she says.

Four months later, Yelton of northern Kentucky lost his job. She had to move in with her sister. And she could no longer afford essential prescription drugs for diabetes and hypertension.

“I tried to go into unemployment and just couldn’t,” said Yelton, now a resident of Southgate. “I never could.”

A doctor told her about Faith Community Pharmacy, a nonprofit organization that for 20 years has been providing free prescription drugs to people in northern Kentucky who can’t afford them.

Kellee Yelton has been receiving diabetes and high blood pressure medication from Faith Community Pharmacy since losing her job during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Here she is at her home in Southgate.  She is working now but still needs help.

Yelton’s situation is typical among new clients of Faith Community Pharmacy: they are less often retirees. These are people who lost their jobs during the pandemic. Sometimes it’s people who have returned to work but don’t have insurance or a premium so high they can’t afford prescription drugs. These are people who are now making choices between food and gas, medical bills and utilities, because they can’t keep up with inflation.

It’s the new face of the need for free prescription drugs, said Aaron Broomall, executive director of Faith Community Pharmacy.

The rise of those customers, coupled with more traditional customers — older people living on Social Security checks — is why the service moved this month from a Florence office to a new location: Watertower Square. at 601 Washington Ave. in Newport.

Hayley Jansen, right, helps Tom Deja move into cabinets that will house medicine at Faith Community Pharmacy in Newport on June 1.  The Florence Pharmacy move is to meet a growing need for free prescription drugs in Northern Kentucky.

Moving to Newport brings free pharmacy closer to new customers

Workers were there on a Wednesday morning, moving shelves in a space more than three times the size of the operation’s former pharmacy in Florence. They moved in printers, chairs, counters and more in preparation for the June 6 opening.

The location couldn’t be better for service, Broomall said. Watertower Square is the hub of services. The visibility will bring even more customers to Faith Community Pharmacy, Broomall predicted. The new location is on a bus route – useful for people with limited transportation options or money for gas, and it’s in the urban core of Northern Kentucky, where many customers of the pharmacy.

To bring the service to more people, the organization plans to increase reach in churches, schools, clinics, and emergency and urgent care services. For rural customers, another growing group of registrants, Broomall said, “We will deliver their prescriptions.”

Carol Foltz prepares prescriptions at Faith Community Pharmacy in Newport on June 6, 2022.

Drug costs are hurting Americans during the pandemic

What this free pharmacy sees is a slice of what’s happened in America since the pandemic began.

A GoodRx survey released in March 2021 shows that one in three Americans saw their personal drug costs rise in 2020. Nearly 40% said they had difficulty paying for their prescription drugs and more than 20% said they were struggling. to pay for basic needs, such as food and housing, accordingly.