New neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder fund opens

The PAN Foundation today opened a new financial assistance program for people living with neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder. Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder, also known as Devic’s disease and neuromyelitis optica, is a rare autoimmune disease where an individual’s immune system reacts against its own cells in the central nervous system, mainly in the optic nerves and spinal cord, but sometimes in the brain.

The National Organization for Rare Disorders estimates that between one and 10 of every 100,000 people are living with neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder worldwide.   

“There is no cure for neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder, but with proper treatment, long-term remission is sometimes possible. Our goal is to help our patients focus on managing their illness, rather than worrying about their out-of-pocket treatment costs,” said PAN President and CEO Kevin L. Hagan. “We are thankful for our donors, who have made it possible for us to offer this new assistance fund to support those living with this rare and serious disease.”

Patients who qualify are eligible to receive $9,600 per year in financial assistance to pay for the deductibles, copays, and coinsurance costs associated with their treatment for neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder.   
Eligibility requirements  
To get financial assistance for neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder, patients must:    

  • Be getting treatment for neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder.  
  • Have Medicare health insurance that covers the qualifying medication or product.   
  • Have an income that falls at or below 400 percent of the federal poverty level.   

How to apply  
Patients or caregivers applying on their behalf can apply for assistance using the PAN Foundation’s online patient portal. To apply on behalf of a patient, providers can use the provider portal, while pharmacists can use the pharmacy portal. A series of how-to guides are also available for the patient portal, including common tasks like creating an account and applying for assistance online. 

Other patient support services at PAN  

Transportation assistance  
PAN grant recipients may also qualify for transportation assistance to allow them to get to doctor’s appointments and pharmacy visits. 

Free application support for the federal Extra Help program  
The Extra Help program—also known as the Low-Income Subsidy program—is administered by the Social Security Administration and was designed to assist people with their Medicare prescription drug plan costs.

Thousands of Medicare beneficiaries—many of whom are PAN grant recipients—may qualify for state or federal assistance from the program but don’t know that they are eligible. Patients can create or log in to their patient portal account to see if they are eligible for free application assistance for the federal Extra Help program.  

About the PAN Foundation  
The PAN Foundation is an independent, national 501 (c)(3) organization dedicated to helping federally and commercially insured people living with life-threatening, chronic, and rare diseases with the out-of-pocket costs for their prescribed medications.   

Since 2004, we have provided more than 1 million underinsured patients with $4 billion in financial assistance. Partnering with generous donors, healthcare providers, and pharmacies, we provide the underinsured population access to the healthcare treatments they need to best manage their conditions and focus on improving their quality of life. Learn more at   


Liz Eckert, Senior Director of Marketing and Communications