GERMANTOWN, Md., Dec. 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The HealthWell Foundation®, an independent non-profit that provides a financial lifeline for inadequately insured Americans, has launched a new fund to provide copayment and premium assistance to Medicare patients living with acromegaly. Through the fund, HealthWell will provide up to $10,000 in financial assistance for a 12-month grant to eligible acromegaly patients who have annual household incomes up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level.
Acromegaly is a rare, but serious, condition caused by too much growth hormone (GH) in the blood and is usually caused by a non-cancerous tumor in the pituitary gland called a pituitary adenoma. According to the Endocrine Society's Hormone Health Network, the tumor produces too much GH and raises the level of GH in the blood. Too much GH also raises the level of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), a hormone produced in the liver that also promotes growth. Too much GH in children causes increased height and is called gigantism. It is extremely rare. Acromegaly in adults occurs mainly in middle-aged men and women and may cause diabetes, large hands and feet, and heart problems. Each year, about three new cases of acromegaly occur for every million people.
"Since individuals who have acromegaly often require years of medical treatment and expert care, ensuring access to a range of care options can improve both their quality and length of life," said Endocrine Society President Lynnette K. Nieman, MD. "This fund will provide needed financial support for individuals who are dealing with a rare disease diagnosis."
"While medications are available to treat acromegaly, there is no cure. Many patients diagnosed with this devastating condition will remain on treatment for the rest of their lives," said Krista Zodet, HealthWell Foundation President. "Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we can hopefully ease some of the financial burden these patients face so they can focus on their treatment and a better quality of life and not the costs associated with managing their condition."
To determine eligibility and apply for financial assistance, visit HealthWell's Acromegaly – Medicare Access Fund page. To learn how you can support this or other HealthWell programs, visit HealthWellFoundation.org.
About the HealthWell Foundation
A nationally recognized, independent non-profit organization founded in 2003, the HealthWell Foundation has served as a safety net for more than 320,000 underinsured patients in more than 60 disease areas by providing access to life-changing medical treatments they otherwise would not be able to afford. HealthWell provides financial assistance to adults and children facing medical hardship resulting from gaps in their insurance that cause out-of-pocket medical expenses to escalate rapidly. HealthWell assists with the treatment-related cost-sharing obligations of these patients. For more information, visit www.HealthWellFoundation.org.
About the Endocrine Society
Endocrinologists are at the core of solving the most pressing health problems of our time, from diabetes and obesity to infertility, bone health, and hormone-related cancers. The Endocrine Society is the world's oldest and largest organization of scientists devoted to hormone research and physicians who care for people with hormone-related conditions.
The Society has more than 18,000 members, including scientists, physicians, educators, nurses and students in 122 countries. To learn more about the Society and the field of endocrinology, visit www.endocrine.org or follow on Twitter at @TheEndoSociety and @EndoMedia.
SOURCE HealthWell Foundation