Medicines360, a mission-driven women’s health pharmaceutical nonprofit and Direct Relief, a humanitarian aid organization, today announced their partnership to provide Medicines360’s hormonal IUD, LILETTA®, free of charge to clinics that serve the most vulnerable women in the United States, such as uninsured women. Medicines360 established an institutional patient assistance program (IPAP) known as the “IUD Access Partnership,” with Direct Relief to provide IUDs to clinics that serve women who cannot obtain the product through private insurance, Medicaid or other public funding.
This partnership marks the first consistent supply of contraceptives offered through Direct Relief. In addition, this joint endeavor represents a new, groundbreaking approach for expanding contraceptive access at a critical moment in history for women’s reproductive rights.
“A woman should be able to choose if and when she becomes pregnant, but in the United States, not every woman has that luxury,” said Jessica Grossman, MD, CEO of Medicines360. “Unfortunately, access to the most effective forms of contraception, like IUDs, is an issue for many clinics where low-income women seek care. This partnership delivers on our mission to expand access for the women who need it most, allowing them to avoid unplanned pregnancy if they choose.”
IPAPs provide drugs and medical supplies free of charge via bulk shipments to specific, vetted institutions. With an IPAP for the hormonal IUD, a woman can receive an IUD the same day she visits the clinic. This simplified process will eliminate the expense and inconvenience of a return trip, which is often prohibitive for women of lower incomes.
“This partnership reaffirms our shared commitment to filling the gaps in women’s health. Direct Relief’s collaboration with Medicines360 demonstrates the power of two mission-driven organizations joining forces to tackle issues that affect reproductive care, and we look forward to meeting the needs of underserved women across the country,” said Thomas Tighe, Direct Relief President and CEO.
IUD Access Partnership enables increased access to IUDs, a form of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs), which are among the most effective forms of family planning according to the CDC. This is all possible through Direct Relief’s scalable program that delivers essential medical resources by working with pharmaceutical manufacturers and local healthcare providers.