Saginaw prescription assistance nonprofit to close - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Saginaw prescription assistance nonprofit to close


(12/06/13) - It is a place where people in the Saginaw area go to get free medicine.

But soon, it will close.

We're talking about the Community Prescription Support Program, also known as CRxSP.

It will closing on Dec. 20 because of lack of funding and volunteers.

We profiled the CRxSP program two years ago when it had money problems, and those money problems didn't go away.

"It's a big loss," says Darius Thomas of Saginaw.

The waiting room inside the Community Prescription Support Program in downtown Saginaw looks crowded, but people here say it's typical. This is where people low on funds and insurance come to get free prescription medication.

Aaron Baase has been here four times to pick up medication.

"$500 to $600 a month," is how much Aaron Baase of Saginaw says his prescriptions are worth.

"I would have to pay, yeah, but they help me here," he says.

The help will end on Dec. 20. That's when CRxSP will be closing for good. The non-profit has been here since 2002 and runs on donations and grants, but the money is now nearly gone.   It runs mainly on volunteers, but the volunteers have been declining in numbers too.

"I just can't believe, this is just a great organization here, that all volunteer, I realize, but they do a great thing in helping people that need medication and can't afford it," said Pete Lamers.

Lamers has been coming here since last November.  He is out of work and his medication is expensive.

"It's about $150," Lamers said. $150 each month and that's just for a month.

Angelo Espinoza is working, but his insurance doesn't help much.
"I have three, four medications that I need, and without this program I would probably have a difficult time trying to get them on a month to month basis because of the cost," he says.

The volunteers that are still here are advising people about other low-cost prescription programs in the area, including St. Mary's of Michigan's Center of Hope. Nasreen Azmat gets about a hundred dollars worth of medication a month from CRxSP and when asked how is she going to pay for the medication now, she has an answer similar to many here.

"I don't know," she says.

It's not clear how many people use CRxSP for the medication needs now, but when we did our story two years ago, they had 6,000 patients.

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