Celebration of Life, Achievements, and YOU
This Edition is Dedicated in Memory of Andrew Taylor
You may have noticed the title of this edition. In April of 2022, we were saddened by the sudden passing of beloved HealthWell family member, Andrew Taylor. In honor of Andrew, we have dedicated this edition in his memory. I’m truly honored to share more about Andrew and the dynamic impact he had on the entire HealthWell family later in this issue.
As we begin a new year, many take time to reflect on the past year – the good and the bad, the achievements and the challenges. In this edition, I’ll be doing just that. While the team and I have had a productive and eventful 2022, we are forever mindful of the challenges that many of those we serve continue to face. Challenges affording critical, often lifesaving, medical treatments to manage chronic illnesses – having to decide whether to purchase food, pay rent or purchase medications. We are honored to be able to continue to provide a financial lifeline to America’s underinsured to help eliminate those hardships. Making sure that no one has to forgo medical treatments simply because they can’t afford them is and will always be our number one priority. We are thankful for our dedicated individual and corporate donors who recognize the difficulties these patients endure and for their selfless generosity which allows us to carry out our mission. We cannot do this alone and we are truly humbled by your support.
Recently, the Contact Center team began its transition back to in-office services. The transition continues to go smoothly and I’m excited to share that the team members, many of whom had been working remotely since they joined HWF Direct and had never met their co-workers in-person, executed a flawless return to the office. Also, I’d like to thank the entire Contact Center team for never missing a beat during the pandemic and for their dedication and commitment to our mission. It’s an honor to be working with all of you.
Since my last letter, we’ve continued to expand our programs, enhance our online tools, welcome new members to the corporate and Contact Center teams, and launch new funds to assist even more patients in need. I’ll go into more detail about these and other activities later in this issue, so I hope you’ll continue to read.
In Loving Memory of Andrew Taylor
For many of our devoted readers, you’ve heard me refer to our team as “family.” This is not a word that I use lightheartedly, but with the utmost sincerity. Each and every member of our corporate and Contact Center team is just that, family! That bond makes it even more difficult when a member of the team is hurting, suffering through life’s difficulties, or in this case, passes on. I compare our team to brothers and sisters, best friends, so as you can imagine, saying goodbye is traumatic and unbearably painful. In April of 2022, we were devastated by the sudden passing of our devoted and loved family member, Andrew Taylor. Andrew had been a part of our Contact Center family since 2018 and joined the Quality Assurance team in 2020. From the beginning, Andrew was a champion of mentoring and coaching. He created, and led, a program designed to help fellow staff members overcome various struggles with quality and customer service. Andrew’s kind heart and welcoming personality were always a bright spot for those around him. His commitment to assisting not only the patients we serve, but also his fellow teammates, was genuine and heartfelt. Andrew is truly missed and will always have a special place in our hearts. “Our Contact Center will never be the same.” – Michael King, HWF Direct, Program Director
Foundation and Services Updates
We are committed to identifying and implementing ways to make our programs and working with us as seamless as possible. From the launch of new funds to enhancements to our online tools and services, to partnering with organizations who share our passion for assisting those in need, we take great pride in making sure all we do has a positive impact for those we serve.
Since my last letter, we were proud to launch a new fund to help patients living with Alagille Syndrome. Through our Alagille Syndrome Vitamins and Supplements Fund, we offer up to $1,500 in financial assistance to eligible patients living in the United States and US territories who have annual household incomes up to 500 percent of the federal poverty level to obtain vitamins and supplements for the management of their condition.
Most recently, we opened a new fund to assist those living with Waldenstrom Macroglobulinemia, a rare type of blood cancer. The new fund provides up to $8,000 in medication copayment or insurance premium assistance to eligible patients who have household incomes up to 500 percent of the federal poverty level for treatment and management of their disease.
We’d like to thank our newest alliance partners, the Alagille Syndrome Alliance (ALGSA) and the International Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia Foundation (IWMF) for helping us spread the word about the new funds. To learn more about these funds and our robust portfolio of disease areas we cover, visit our Disease Funds page. I also invite you to visit our Alliance Partners page to learn about the ALGSA and the IWMF and other amazing organizations who share our mission.
Need a Ride – We’ve Got You Covered
Do you have a grant through one of our travel funds? Did you know that you can arrange a ride to and from your treatments through your grant? In the spring of 2022, we partnered with Ride Health to provide transportation services for eligible HealthWell grant recipients. Through the service, patients can request transportation to and from medical appointments as related to their travel assistance grant in advance – with the transportation cost being paid directly from their grant. If you currently have a grant through one of our travel assistance funds, please review the disease fund page to learn more and to book a ride!
Get the Message – Enhanced Portal Features Now Live
In the fall, we were excited to implement enhanced features to our portals to further simplify the user experience. Our latest enhancements include a new message center to help our provider, pharmacy, and patient portal users stay current on new processes and portal enhancements. The message center also provides a spot to share your feedback, inquire about a patient-specific account, request a portal demo, and more.
If you haven’t logged in to our portals recently, we encourage you to take a few minutes to check out our new message center, re-enrollment process updates, grant status alerts and other enhancements!
We hope you find these helpful and look forward to your feedback.
Meet the Team
As the need for our services continues to grow, we continue to enhance our HealthWell family with talented individuals to help us carry out our mission. Since my last letter, we were honored to welcome 17 new members to our Contact Center team who serve as the first line of communication for the patients, providers, and pharmacies who reach out to us every day for assistance. We were also excited to enhance our corporate staff with the addition of six team members. Please join me in welcoming: Dillon Hughes, Manager, Salesforce Development; Megan Minnick, HR Coordinator; Ellen Riley-Davis, Operations Manager; Lori Martin, Associate Director of Human Resources; Audrey Quartey, Associate Director, External Relations; and Linda Haglund, Marketing & Events Coordinator. To learn more about our team, visit the “Who We Are” page on our website.
Conferences and Presentations
Early in 2022, I wrote to you about our whirlwind conference schedule! The third and fourth quarters proved equally busy, and the team found themselves jet set from city to city spreading the word about our programs and forging relationships with other non-profit organizations to reach disease-specific communities. Conferences encompassed exhibits as well as presentations from our senior leaders. Here are a few of the many events we were excited to attend:
2022 ASCO Annual Meeting: June 3-7, 2022, Chicago, IL.
PAP 2022 – Patient Assistance & Access Programs: June 28-30, 2022, Parsippany, NJ; Panel Presentation: Navigate the Legal Underpinnings of Patient Assistance and Gain Insight on OIG Oversight. Panel members included: Alan Klein, Chief Development Officer, HealthWell Foundation; Melissa Kuhta, Senior Manager of Compliance, PAN Foundation; Richard Liner, Senior Assistance Counsel, Bayer; David L. Knowlton, Vice Chair and Compliance Officer, HealthWell Foundation.
Healthcare Advocate Summit: September 7-9, 2022, New Orleans, LA; Panel Presentation: Foundation Assistance – Help Us Fill in the Gaps. Panel members included: Elizabeth Johnson, Co-CEO, Healthcare Advocate Summit; Alan Klein, Chief Development Officer, HealthWell Foundation; Fred Larbi, Chief Operations Officer, HealthWell Foundation; and Shannon Carpenter, M.D., The Bone Health Clinic.
10th Annual National Association of Specialty Pharmacy (NASP): September 19-22, 2022, Orlando, FL: Panel Presentation: Trends in Accessing Patient Financial Assistance. Panel members included: Krista Zodet, HealthWell Foundation President & Chief Executive Officer and Charles Collins, President, Healthcare Stakeholder Solutions, LLC.
Copay, Reimbursement & Access Congress: October 12-14, 2022, Philadelphia, PA: Panel Presentation: Government Enforcement Trends Impacting Copay Assistance. Panel members included: Alan Klein, Chief Development Officer, HealthWell Foundation; Matt Howatt, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania; Augustine Ripa, Senior Counsel for Health Care Fraud, Fraud Section, Civil Division, U.S. Department of Justice; and Robert Clark, Esq., Managing Member, ClarkLaw PLLC.
American Nurses Association – ANCC Pathway to Excellence: October 13-15, 2022, Philadelphia, PA.
American College of Gastroenterology Annual Scientific Meeting: October 23-26, 2022, Charlotte, NC.
North American Cystic Fibrosis Conference (NACFC): November 3-5, 2022, Philadelphia, PA.
The Liver Meeting – 73rd Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases: November 4-7, 2022, Washington, DC
Patient Support Services Congress: November 8-10, 2022, Philadelphia, PA: Presentation: Revolutionize Patient Engagement Strategy for Better Patient Outcomes; Alan Klein, Chief Development Officer, HealthWell Foundation
The American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting: December 10-13, 2022, in New Orleans, LA.
We have an exciting conference lineup planned for 2023 and I look forward to sharing the schedule with you in my next letter.
Have You Made a Plan for the Future?
Did you know that creating a will is a great way to plan for the future? In the spirit of providing accessible health and safety resources to our community, HealthWell partnered with FreeWill to provide an online will-writing tool! It’s safe, secure, and takes 20 minutes or less to complete — and it’s 100% free to use! You can also make an extraordinary difference in the lives of others by making a planned gift to the HealthWell Foundation. Remembering the HealthWell Foundation in your will or trust is one of the most meaningful gifts you can offer to those who struggle with a chronic illness and need the financial support for their life-changing, sometimes lifesaving, medications when their insurance simply isn’t enough. Claim your free will today!
With Thanks and Gratitude – Celebrating You
On November 29th, we participated in GivingTuesday – a worldwide movement that has inspired millions to unleash the power of their generosity to help others. The concept behind GivingTuesday is one that we hold close to our collective hearts as part of our commitment to supporting patient communities. Thanks to your generosity, we exceeded our fundraising total for 2021! We are so thankful for those who gave selflessly to ensure that we can continue to carry out our mission to reduce financial barriers to care for underinsured patients with chronic or life-altering diseases. I’m honored to share our GivingTuesday campaign with you so you can see first-hand what a donation to the HealthWell Foundation means to someone who would have otherwise forgone critical, often lifesaving, medical treatments simply because they can’t afford them. I’m sure you’ll be moved by Rachel’s heartfelt letter about a close family friend, Bob, who was able to receive treatment for his Hepatitis C because of a grant from HealthWell.
As we begin the new year, we hope that you will take the opportunity to show your support so HealthWell can help even more patients in need. We know there are many organizations worthy of your donation and are truly humbled by the generous gifts we continue to receive from our individual and corporate donors. Please know that your 2022 donation was put to work immediately to assist those in need. Year-end statements for your generous contributions in support of our work will be sent in February, so please be on the lookout. Thank you for helping us help so many in need.
Here are a few ways you can support our mission:
- Make a tax-deductible contribution.
- Donate in the name of a friend or loved one.
- Include the HealthWell Foundation in your estate plans.
Generosity Comes in Many Forms
Not able to make a financial contribution? Helping us spread the word is also a critical, and highly valued, contribution to the HealthWell Foundation. You can help by spreading the word about the life-changing work we do. Connect with us through our social communities! Here’s how you can help us make a difference in the life of a patient in need today!
- Create a Facebook fundraiser to commemorate a birthday, anniversary or other special occasion.
- Spread the word about the important work we do by sharing your HealthWell story.
Thank you for helping us help others in any way you can. The HealthWell Foundation Family wishes you and yours a safe, healthy and happy 2023!