Access to Rheumatoid Arthritis Medicines in Exchanges

Access to Rheumatoid Arthritis Medicines in Exchanges

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that causes chronic joint inflammation and painful swelling that may result in long-term damage and disability. In addition to causing joint problems, RA sometimes can affect other organs of the body—such as the skin, eyes, lungs, and blood vessels. Immunosuppressant medicines are an essential component of RA treatment; these medicines help to reduce inflammation and prevent joint damage. The specific choice of therapy depends upon several factors, including the severity of disease activity when therapy is initiated and the response of the patient to prior interventions. This fact sheet offers insight into access to these medicines in the new health insurance exchanges. Key findings are primarily based on an analysis of 84 plans in the 15 states with the highest expected exchange enrollment for 2014.

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