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United Way of Fresno County

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- United Way of Fresno County-FamilyWize Partnership Helps Save Local Residents $1,046,936 in Healthcare Costs

Every dollar patients spend on prescription drugs to treat heart disease and diabetes saves them $3 to $10 on other medical services, according to a 2011 Health Affairs study cited by United Way of Fresno County and FamilyWize, two organizations that are partnering to help families stay healthy.



As of December 31, 2012, the FamilyWize-United Way partnership with local pharmacies has saved people living or working in this area more than $231,507 on everyday prescription costs for conditions such as asthma, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and many others, plus an additional $1,046,936 savings on other medical services specifically related to heart disease and diabetes such as doctor’s office visits, hospitalizations and surgeries.





“Lowering the cost of prescription drugs allows more people to get the medicine they need when they need it,” said R. Michael Alexander of United Way of Fresno County. “The amount patients save on the cost of complications, disease progression and additional health related expenses are far greater than just the savings on the medicine.  This program impacts health and also financial stability, two building blocks of advancing the common good. That’s why we’ve partnered with FamilyWize to distribute free prescription discount cards to everyone in our area. It’s wonderful that almost every local pharmacy participates in this program that helps our community so much.”


Savings on medications can be as much as 75% with the free FamilyWize prescription discount card. Nationwide, more than 5 million people have been helped and more than $448 million has been saved. The card requires no enrollment or activation. Consumers just give the card to their pharmacists every time a prescription is needed and discounts are automatically applied.

“The FamilyWize card provides immediate savings on prescription medicines and can make a difference in staying healthy. We hope everyone will help spread the word to their family and friends about this important free help,” said Ellen Imber, Vice-President Community Outreach for the FamilyWize Community Service Partnership.

“The cards can be used by everyone in the community, not just people without insurance,” Alexander said. “They can even be used by people with insurance who have high deductibles or take medicine not covered by their plan or by people with Medicaid or Medicare when their prescription isn’t covered,” Alexander added.






The FamilyWize-United Way Card is easy to use and

  • Free
  • For immediate and unlimited use
  • For use by anyone
  • Accepted at every chain pharmacy and most independent pharmacies
  • Requires no enrollment or personal information


People can contact United Way of Fresno County to get a card, text “family” to 700700 for a text version of the card or visit to print a card and compare discounted drug prices at the different participating pharmacies.


The FamilyWize Community Service Partnership was established in 2005 by Dan and Susan Barnes to reduce the cost of prescriptions for people who live and work in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania. Distribution of these cards was later coordinated by the local United Way. When United Ways in other communities heard about the program, they started asking for cards for their communities
because its unique model provides both transparency and lowest possible prices for prescription medicine. More than 50,000 community and faith-based organizations, county agencies, doctors, pharmacies, companies, and individuals across the country are now joined together in this partnership to distribute free FamilyWize prescription drug discount cards in their communities, reducing the cost of medicine for people in 96% of counties in the United States. For more information, please visit








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