CMAP Offers Free Medications, Cancer Screens
Cenla residents may be eligible for programs
An initiative of The Rapides Foundation provides eligible residents with free prescription medications and cancer screens. The Cenla Medication Access Program, created by The Rapides Foundation in 2001 to address access to quality healthcare in Central Louisiana, offers free or reduced-cost prescriptions to clients throughout Louisiana. The CMAP Cancer Screening Project provides free screenings for breast, cervical and colorectal cancers for Central Louisiana residents.
Both programs are administered by CMAP and funded under the Foundation’s Healthcare Access Initiative. CMAP Executive Director Wendy Roy said CMAP wants to reach as many residents as possible to ensure that people are able to get potentially life-saving medications and cancer screens.
Cenla Medication Access Program
CMAP’s medication service offers free or low-cost medications through its partnerships with pharmaceutical companies. CMAP Patient Assistance Program specialists work with rural health clinics and primary care practices to provide patients’ prescriptions. In addition, Rapides Regional Medical Center contracts with CMAP to provide free or low-cost medications to patients who visit the HP Long Outpatient Clinics.
To be eligible for CMAP’s free prescription service, residents must be 18 or older, reside in Louisiana and cannot have Medicaid or prescription coverage through private insurance. The resident’s household income must be at or below 250% of the Federal Poverty Level. The income requirement allows people to enroll if their monthly income is $2,602 or lower for one person; $3,523 for a family of two; $4,444 for a family of three; and $5,365 for a family of four. The complete list of income requirements can be found at www.cmaprx.org.
To expand its reach, CMAP opened its medication program to Louisiana residents who are on Medicare. While Medicare covers many prescriptions, CMAP would benefit a Medicare patient who is put on a medication that may not be fully covered under their current plan. “CMAP could fill the gap,” Roy said. “You may or may not need help right now, but call us and apply so you can get the process out of the way. Once you are enrolled, you are eligible for the whole year.”
Callers will be asked to fill out a one-page application, send in a copy of their driver’s license or photo ID, and proof of income. The application and other information can be found on the CMAPrx.org website. Call 318-443-7494 or toll-free at 1-888-443-7494 to apply.
Cancer Screening Project
The Cancer Screening Project offers free screenings for breast, cervical and colorectal cancers for Central Louisiana residents who have no medical insurance or are on Medicaid. The program follows the American Cancer Society screening guidelines, which recommend how often men and women should get screened, and at what ages.
“Early detection is so important, so the goal of the Cancer Screening Project is for people to get screened,” Roy said. In partnership with the Feist-Weiller Cancer Center’s Partners in Wellness Program at LSU Health Shreveport, CMAP is able to bring screenings to the nine parishes in the Foundation’s service area through a mobile unit. People with appointments can get digital mammograms, clinical breast exams, Pap smears and cervical exams inside the unit, which travels to communities twice a month.
In addition, residents can pick up take-home colorectal cancer screening tests called FIT kits. A list of the Cancer Screening mobile unit stops can be found at www.cmaprx.org.
Central Louisiana residents can get screened at any location, so they are encouraged to call for an appointment now and not wait for the mobile unit to come to their parish. Call Cancer Screening Specialist Kayla Edwards at 318-767-3027 or toll-free at 1-855-767-3027 for an appointment.
The Foundation’s Healthcare Access Initiative is designed to address medication access and cancer screenings; foster the establishment and expansion of primary care access with integrated behavioral and oral health services; and address medical manpower shortages.