Merck and the ADAP Crisis Task Force (ACTF) announced a number of new initiatives to help struggling state AIDS Drug Assistance Programs (ADAPs) continue to provide access to medicines to people living with HIV.
This is the third major response from Merck and ACTF in the last four years, as the financial crisis for these critical state programs continues.
Merck has agreed to:
•Again lower the price of ISENTRESS (raltegravir) to eligible ADAPs, effective Jan. 1, 2012. The new price will be "frozen" and will be available as part of the existing Merck special pricing program through Dec. 31, 2013. Merck was the first company to freeze the price of an antiretroviral (ARV) therapy to ADAPs in 2003.
"On behalf of the nearly two hundred thousand clients that ADAPs serve, we applaud Merck for its continued commitment to HIV," said Dwayne Haught, spokesperson for the ACTF and manager of the Texas ADAP. "Merck's history of HIV research and development, responsible pricing and related efforts are consistent with its track record of working to help ensure access to treatments for the people most in need. We commend Merck for responding once again to the unprecedented fiscal need faced by state ADAPs by providing additional support to help provide people living with HIV access to HIV medicines."
"With our company's legacy in HIV over the last 25 years, we consider it our obligation to continue to work with the ADAPs on solutions that provide crucial support for uninsured and underserved people living with HIV," said Chirfi Guindo, vice president and general manager, Merck HIV Franchise. "It is imperative to act now, given the ongoing ADAP funding crisis. We applaud President Obama's recent announcements of enhanced federal support for ADAPs and state HIV programs, and look forward to working together on sustainable solutions through improvements in the health care delivery system."
"These actions come at a time when federal funding for ADAPs remains relatively flat compared to enrollment growth, and state funding continues to fluctuate, making it difficult for the ADAP programs to provide access and care to all the clients they need to serve," said Lynda Dee, spokesperson for the Fair Pricing Coalition. "The Fair Pricing Coalition commends Merck for its long-standing commitment to providing access to treatment and welcomes Merck's new initiatives to help with the current ADAP funding crises.”
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