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Medications

General information about medications, at the NAMI website

MassMedLine is a free, confidential service available to all Massachusetts residents who are seeking information regarding their medications. Whether you are having difficulties affording your medications or want to know what the side effects are to your prescriptions, MassMedLine can help, 866-633-1617.

Prescription Drug Patient Assistance Programs

U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Index to Drug-Specific Information

Drugalert.org: Keeping an eye on presciption medication.

DrugWatch.com provides up-to-date information on the side effects of common prescription and over-the-counter medications.

MedlinePlus will direct you to information to help answer health questions. MedlinePlus brings together authoritative information from NLM, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and other government agencies and health-related organizations.

AddictionLibrary.org is part of the Florida Non-Profit, USA Addiction Treatment Partnership.

Genericmedlist.com Compare generic medications discount programs from major retail pharmacies.

Prescription Advantage is a state-sponsored prescription drug insurance plan for Massachusetts seniors and disabled residents. For people on Medicare, Prescription Advantage helps pay Part D Prescription Drug Plan costs. For people not on Medicare, the program provides primary prescription drug coverage

Using Antipsychotics to Treat: Depression, Comparing Effectiveness, Safety, and Price  Consumer Reports Health, Best Buy Drugs, Published October 2011

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not generally considered part of conventional medicine. Learn about CAM basics and statistics on use.

Mental Health America has a new web resource that provides a comparative, research-based approach on complementary and alternative treatments for mental health conditions.

 

Health Insurance

MassHealth, official government site to apply for Medicaid, prescription drugs list and other information:

MassHealth Ombudsman:  A new service from MassHealth provides an Ombudsman for people with disabilities.  This office will provide personal assistance explaining the processes, understanding requirements and will give hands-on assistance filling out forms over the telephone. Here is a list of what is available.

  • Publications in Large Print
  • Publications in Electronic Format
  • TTY
  • Personal Assistance via telephone/email
  • Personal assistance in person
  • Publications in Braille
MassHealth Disability Accommodation Ombudsman
100 Hancock Street, 6th Floor, Quincy, MA 02171
masshealthhelp@ehs.state.ma.us or  617-847-3468 or  TTY: 617-847-3788
 
Health Care For All, helpline, healthcare resources, public and private programs (Multilingual)  The Health Care For All Helpline phone number is 1-800-272-4232. 
 
Health Law Advocatesfor assistance to appeal denials of coverage by private health insurance plans and government programs, actions to reduce large medical bills.
 
How can the Office of Patient Protections & Office Grievances help me? If you have been denied coverage or care from your private or commercial insurer, the Office of Patient Protects may be able to help! Download or view Office of Patient Protections info.
 

The Massachusetts Family-to-Family Health Information Center, is a FREE parent-run project at the Federation for Children with Special Needs, that advises families on how to receive benefits and to qualify and apply for MassHealth. In addition, they assist families with children and youth with special healthcare needs in accessing public and private health insurance benefits, community resources, offer a listserv, an annual family conference, conference calls, and  host workshops about healthcare financing. Contact project director Beth Dworetzky at 1-800-331-0688, ext. 210 or massfv@fcsn.org.

The U.S. Depart. of Health and Human Services (HHS) launched Healthcare.gov. Every health insurance plan in the new Marketplace will offer comprehensive coverage, from doctors to medications to hospital visits. People can compare all of their insurance options based on price, benefits, quality, and other features that may be important, in plain language that makes sense. Learn More About the Health Insurance Marketplace

Working with Your Health Insurer: 10 Tips for Families. When you have a child or youth with special health care needs, your health insurer is an important partner. Here are some tips to help ensure your child is receiving the maximum amount of health services covered by your insurance.

My “Must Have: Papers: There are some papers that everybody must have. Here are some tips about keeping and protecting your important personal records and information.

Massachusetts Commonwealth Connector, it’s mission it to help you find the right health plan and avoid tax penalties:

Medicare, Medicare and you booklet (current year), eligibility, Prescription Drug Plans (current year), and other information

Extra help for Medicare (Part D) beneficiaries: help with lowered premiums and co-pays if you have limited income and resources, find out if you are eligible and apply online, in English and Spanish:

Serving the Health Information Needs of Elders (SHINE) provides health insurance counseling services to the elderly and disabled adults. SHINE counselors are trained to handle complex questions:

Guide that provides information about how to get health insurance, pre-existing conditions, Medicare, what happens to your coverage if you leave your job and answers to many other questions about health insurance.

Ask Medicare. The Department of Health and Human Services has created a web site called “Ask Medicare” to help caregivers navigate the often confusing Medicare system.

You have privacy rights under a federal law that protects your health information (HIPAA). These rights are important for you to know. You can exercise these rights, ask questions about them, and file a complaint if you think your rights are being denied or your health information isn’t being protected. This link opens a PDF document.

Mass. Dept. of Public Health, Office of Patient Protection, Managed Care Protections and Grievances (Consumer Guide, Frequently Asked Questions also in many languages, Internal and External Review Process, etc.):

The Autism Insurance Resource Center provides information to the public about insurance coverage under a new law, An Act Relative to Insurance Coverage for Autism (ARICA), which took effect in Massachusetts on January 1, 2011. There are many questions relating to the implementation of the law, e.g., to whom, ARICA applies, what treatments are covered and how to access coverage.

MassHealth CommonHealth provides health insurance for people with disabilities who are working at least forty hours a month.

  • CommonHealth members have same health benefit package as MassHealth Standard members.
  • Does not have income or asset limitations
  • Can be used in addition to employer-sponsored health insurance for items and services not covered.
  • Call MassHealth Customer Service at 1-800-841-2900 (1-800-497-4648 TTY) to request a Medical Benefit Request (MBR form) or download the form

 

Grants for Children’s Healthcare Treatments. The United Healthcare Children’s Foundation is seeking grant applications from families in need of financial assistance to help pay for their child’s health care treatments, services or equipment not covered, or not fully covered, by their commercial health insurance plan. To be eligible for a grant, children must be 16 years of age or younger, families must meet economic guidelines, reside in the United States and have a commercial health insurance plan. Qualifying families can receive up to $5,000 to help pay for medical services and equipment such as physical, occupational and speech therapy, counseling services, surgeries, prescriptions, wheelchairs, orthotics, eyeglasses and hearing aids.  Grants are available for medical expenses families have incurred 60 days prior to the date of application as well as for ongoing and future medical needs. Parents or legal guardians may apply for grants.

 

Insurance

Guide to Long-Term Care Insurance, this guide answers many questions about long-term care insurance, including how much it costs, what it covers and where to find long-term care insurance.

The Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education (LIFE), is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping consumers make smart insurance decisions to safeguard their families’ financial futures. The main topics addressed in their educational efforts are life, disability, long-term care and health insurance. LIFE does not endorse any product, company or insurance advisor.

Mass. Division of Insurance, Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, Information for Consumers – consumer guides about various types of insurance policies:

InsureMASS Insurance Premium Comparison Website, Auto Insurance Rate Comparison Tool. This site produces sample insurance premiums for typical drivers with various backgrounds and levels of experience. Your actual premium may differ significantly from the sample based on specific information that you will provide to a company when you apply for insurance.