DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – According to the prescription drug comparison website GoodRx, in January of this year the price of more than 800 medications increased by about 5%.
For uninsured people living at or below the poverty line, these increases can mean going without much-needed medications.
“We have patients who take 5, 6, 7 medications, which means you can’t buy cereal for the babies or you can’t buy diapers and wipes, you know?” said the pharmacist in charge, Carlos Irula.
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul Pharmacy Charity provides a lifeline to the uninsured whose family income is at or below 300% of the federal poverty level by offering free prescriptions.
“We’re starting to see a larger group of people who may have had insurance in the past and for whatever reason are losing their jobs,” Irula said. “Compared to last year, we have seen growth of around 185%.”
To keep up with demand, they hope to hire more staff, and instead of manually filling prescriptions, they’re looking to buy robots that can do the job.
Since opening in 2018, the pharmacy has filled nearly 100,000 prescriptions and is now expanding to provide free delivery services statewide.
They hope to secure a new 5,000 square foot space in the near future to better serve their needs.
“This year alone, we are projecting 80,000 prescriptions this year alone, so we are actively campaigning to raise funds,” Irula said. “All those donations go towards the purchase of medicines like these.”