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Patient Access Network offers assistance for patients with retinal vein occlusion (RVO)


WASHINGTON, D.C. – On June 22, 2010, Patient Access Network (PAN) Foundation will begin providing co-payment assistance for medications to underinsured patients with retinal vein occlusion (RVO). Qualified patients will be granted $5,000 per year to cover the cost of medications related to their disease.

To qualify for assistance under this fund, patients must show that they have health insurance, that their household income is under 400% of the Federal Poverty Level, and that they are being treated for retinal vein occlusion (RVO). Patients can start the application process online at www.PANfoundation.org or by calling 1-866-316-PANF (7263).

“Our patients do have health insurance; many have Medicare, and yet they still can’t comply with their treatment because of high out-of-pocket costs” said Julie Reynes, PAN President.

Central and branch retinal vein occlusions (RVO) happen when the vein at the back of the eye is blocked. This blockage causes pressure build and some of the small blood vessels in the eye may burst and cause fluid to leak into the retina. If untreated the vessels may be able to repair themselves and bypass the blockage but there may be permanent damage to the retina resulting in vision loss.There are many different treatments for RVO, both medications and surgical, all of which aim to preserve the vision of the patient.

This new fund is an expansion of PAN’s 26 existing cancer and chronic disease funds, which cover conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer. PAN provides grants of $1,500-$10,000 per year to qualified patients to help pay for medications for these diseases. In 2009 PAN helped over 18,821 patients access their medications.