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United Way offers FamilyWize card for discounts on prescription drugs to assist those in need



To help individuals with the costs of prescription drugs, United Way of Northern Nevada and Sierra (UWNNS) is offering community members the FamilyWize prescription drug discount card. The card could lower the cost of prescription drugs by an average 20 to 35 percent. UWNNS is providing these cards free-of-charge to any interested individual in the community. Since UWNNS began offering the FamilyWize cards in 2008, more than $2.134 million has been saved on prescriptions drugs from 102,367 claims in the region in which UWNNS serves.

“The FamilyWize discount card is another option for citizens to save on prescription drug costs, enabling them to take their medications as prescribed and invest in their wellness,” said Karen Barsell, CEO and President of UWNNS. “Research shows poverty can affect employment, educational attainment, housing circumstances, nutrition and health. Being in extreme poverty dramatically increases a person’s likelihood of being uninsured.  Many adults avoid seeing a doctor even when necessary because of cost.”

The FamilyWize card can be presented each time a prescription is filled to receive the discounted price or the pharmacy’s retail price, whichever is lower. The card is free and for immediate and unlimited use. There is no waiting period, as well as no age, income or residency requirements. No enrollment or personal information is needed and the card is valid nationwide.

“Since 2008, we have seen more and more individuals take advantage of FamilyWize cards,” said Barsell. “When we attend events where these cards are offered, they are so sought after that we have been known to run out.  We are excited that we have the ability to offer these cards and assist our community in obtaining necessary medications.”

The FamilyWize card can be used by everyone, not just people without insurance. The card does not replace insurance, but people with health insurance may use it during the deductible period. It also can be used to lower the cost of medicine for people who take medications not covered by their plan, or accompanied with health benefits like Medicaid and Medicare. Savings can be up to 30 percent or more with the biggest discounts on generic drugs. FamilyWize is funded by a small portion of the dispensing fee included in the cost of the medicines.

FamilyWize cards can be used at almost every national pharmacy, and many local ones. They offer medications at costs that are close to the prices made available to large insurance companies and employers.  A full listing of participating pharmacies can be found on the familywize.org website.

Those interested in obtaining FamilyWize cards can call United Way in Reno at 775-322-8668 or visit www.FamilyWize.org.

About United Way of Northern Nevada and the Sierra

The foundation that nurtures and supports healthy lives is made up of three, interconnected ‘building blocks’ – education, financial stability and health. United Way is ideally suited to create positive, lasting change by addressing all three areas as one – through proper expertise, capacity and relationships. Join us! Bring your passion, knowledge and resources to get things done all across our community. We all win when a child succeeds in school, when a neighborhood turns around and when workers have solid jobs. For more information, call 775-322-8668 or visit www.uwnns.org.

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