U.S. Patient Assistance Programs

We believe that no one should go without the medicines or vaccines they need.


In 2019 we provided more than 2.2 million, 30-day prescriptions, representing a total value (at wholesale acquisition cost) of more than $1.4 billion of donated product

Our approach

Our company provides certain medicines and adult vaccines for free to people who do not have prescription drug or health insurance coverage and who, without our assistance, cannot afford our medicines and vaccines. This is consistent with our company’s long-held values and traditions of putting patients first.

This approach is aligned with our company’s commitment to improve access to our medicines and adult vaccines for people who need them.

More than 58 years ago, our company created our first U.S. patient assistance program (PAP) to keep affordable medicines within patients’ reach. Through these programs, we have provided more than 43.8 million free prescriptions and adult vaccines, representing a total value (at wholesale acquisition cost) of more than $8 billion.

Our company’s U.S. Patient Assistance Program is a 501(c)(3) entity, separate and distinct from our commercial business. The program is managed by the company’s Office of Corporate Responsibility and is governed by a Board of Trustees and Officers under a set of bylaws.

We have focused PAP teams and dedicated pharmacy and fulfillment teams to ensure continuity in supplying essential medicine and vaccines to our program’s patients.

We work to raise awareness of the PAP among doctors and eligible patients via brochures and enrollment forms posted on the program’s website and through company communications. The program also has its own toll-free line to address caller’s questions and concerns.

Programs and initiatives

Medicine Assistance Tool

As a demonstration of our commitment to helping low-income, uninsured patients gain access to our medicines and adult vaccines, we also participate in PhRMA’s Medicine Assistance Tool (MAT), formerly known as the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA). MAT is a search engine designed to help patients, caregivers and health care providers learn more about access resources available through the various biopharmaceutical industry programs.

MAT helps eligible patients get free or nearly free brand name medicines through a single website that provides information for and access to more than 500 public and private patient assistance programs, including approximately 200 programs offered by biopharmaceutical companies. To date, this tool has helped millions of Americans get free or reduced-cost prescription medicines.

Performance data

Patient Assistance Programs20152016201720182019
Patients utilizing our U.S. Patient Assistance Programs (in thousands)1293306244233239
30-day prescriptions filled (in millions)
1Totals represent 2015–2019 volumes of our U.S. Patient Assistance Program.

In 2019, the U.S. Patient Assistance Program provided over 2.2 million, 30-day prescriptions, representing a total value (at wholesale acquisition cost) of more than $1.4 billion of donated product.

Changes within the patient and prescription volumes for 2015–2019 are a result of periodic changes in the products covered in the U.S. PAPs. Product changes are due, in part, to the inclusion of new products, and as a result of company divestitures, introductions of competing products and the availability of generic alternatives.