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Access & Affordability of Prescription Drugs: An AARP Study of New Jersey's Hispanic Population

Rising prescription drug costs are a concern for most Americans. Hispanic adults in New Jersey may have even greater cause for concern with 46 percent paying full retail prices for their prescriptions while at the same time having comparatively lower incomes.

The survey assesses the opinions and experiences with prescription drug access and affordability among Hispanic adults (18+ years old) in the state of New Jersey. The survey found:

  • 50 percent of Hispanic adults who have bought medication in the last year found that paying for them is either a major (26%) or minor (24%) problem
  • 66 percent of the those without drug coverage reported having major (40%) or minor (26%) difficulties paying for their medications
  • 43 percent reported incomes under $20,000 while 37 percent spend at least $100 out-of-pocket on medications each month
  • 73 percent of those age 50+ are unaware of the New Jersey Pharmacy Assistance for the Aged and Disabled (PAAD) program and 84 percent are unaware of Senior Gold; both help lower Rx costs for beneficiaries

The N.J. Prescription Drug Retail Price Registry provides consumers with information about the retail prices charged by many pharmacies. It is currently available online and only in English; however, 58 percent of those surveyed say they never go online. If it were available via a toll-free phone line, 46 percent say they would use it and 65 percent would use it if it were in Spanish.

This telephone survey of 803 age 18+ Hispanic New Jersey residents was conducted for AARP by Alan Newman Research between May 7thand 17th, 2007. Further information about the survey may be obtained by contacting the report's author, Katherine Bridges, at 207-899-2094. (19 pages)

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