April 23, 2024 Blogs

David Dawson’s Story

My self-identification as a patient stems from me being diagnosed with asthma, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and atrial fibrillation, (Afib), a type of arrhythmia or abnormal heartbeat. Because of this diagnosis, I am using Trelegy inhaler samples that I got for free from my asthma doctor, but they are not enough to use the medication properly like I should. I am also required to take Eliquis, a blood thinner for my Afib, but cannot afford it. Trelegy costs $306.50 a month and Eliquis costs $594.40 a month at list price, before insurance covers any portion of the medications’ list price. With the addition of my RA prescription of Actemra, whose list price is $1,174.81 per injection that I need to take every other week, I could not afford the nearly $4,000 my prescriptions would cost me if I had to pay out of pocket for them.

Although I am thankfully a patient with Medicare coverage, along with some supplemental plans, my prescription drug copays are still way too much, at about $500 per month. 

Due to the fact that I am not able to take Eliquis correctly, my main concern is always the possibility of having a stroke, but I don’t let that keep me from doing whatever I physically can do. 

I believe in lower priced and more affordable prescription drugs because the pricing system is rigged for those with insurance and without. With Medicare, I currently cannot afford Trelegy, Eliquis, and my biologic Actemra, but all of these medications were all available to me for $5 each when I was working and had private insurance. But now they cost me hundreds of dollars. I am retired and even paying for supplemental coverage but the sole reason of being “retired” limits me from receiving “full working man” benefits. This is unfair.


Patients For Affordable Drugs is the only independent national patient organization focused exclusively on achieving policy changes to lower the price of prescription drugs.