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Can policymakers prevent new co-pay accumulator programs from surprising patients at the pharmacy counter?  The short answer: yes. They have several options, in fact, according to a new overview of policy proposals from the Institute for Patient Access.  

The document follows the June release of IfPA’s “Co-pay Accumulator Adjustment Programs” policy brief.  In it, Alliance for Patient Access member Madelaine Feldman, MD, explains that accumulator programs prevent co-pay cards from counting toward a patient’s annual deductible, often without the patient’s knowledge. Patients may then be surprised at the pharmacy when, after several months, their card has been used up and they find that they owe their entire deductible.  Patients who can’t afford their deductible may abandon their prescription.

Co-Pay Accumulator Programs: How Can Policymakers Protect Patients?” notes that ensuring patients’ continual access to their medication requires viable policy solutions.  The document highlights several possibilities.


Not taking one’s medicine can lead to additional health complications, expensive emergency care and even preventable hospitalizations.  By taking action, policymakers can stop patients from paying the price for co-pay accumulator programs – with their pocketbooks and their health.

To learn more, read “Co-Pay Accumulator Programs: How Can Policymakers Protect Patients?” and the policy brief “Co-pay Accumulator Adjustment Programs.”

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