State program boosts medication access by ‘recycling’ medicine

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CASPER, Wyo. —  A state office is reminding eligible Wyoming residents that a program is available to help get access to some medications.

The Wyoming Medication Donation Program is a Wyoming Department of Health effort, that they say is working to “boost access to needed medications and to reduce waste by repurposing useable medicine.”

“With so many people out there who cannot afford to pay for their prescriptions, it’s a shame to see drugs that are still good get thrown away,” said Sarah Gilliard, Wyoming Medication Donation Program manager and pharmacist with WDH. “Our program fills prescriptions with donated drugs for people who cannot afford to pay for their needed medications.” 

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WDH says the program acts as a medication “recycling” platform, collecting usable medicines that would otherwise be destroyed from people who no longer need them and filling prescriptions at no cost for people unable to afford their medications otherwise.

“Increasing access to medication by recycling good drugs and helping those with financial difficulties to obtain and take their medicine is our main goal,” Gilliard said. 

For patients to qualify to receive medications from the program, they must be a Wyoming resident, have a household income at or below 200 percent of federal poverty level, and they can’t have insurance coverage that includes prescriptions. WDH clarifies this includes Wyoming Medicaid, Medicare, and private insurance. 

Wyoming residents interested in donating medications may be able to take advantage of a local donation site. Donation sites will help take the items and send them to the Wyoming Medication Donation Program. Donations can also be mailed directly to the program; out-of-state donations are also acceptable. 

Casper’s donation site is located at the Community Health Center of Central Wyoming- Pharmacy, 5000 Blackmore Road, in Casper.

“Unfortunately, we can’t accept all potential medication items. There are a few common-sense restrictions,” Gilliard said. Donated items must be in a sealed container, they can’t be expired and they can’t be a refrigerated product or a controlled substance, such as opioids.

To learn more about local donation sites or other information about contributing medications, or to find out more about applying for help from the program, visit wyomedicationdonation.org online or call 1-855-257-5041.



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