For Immediate Release

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Melissa Calise

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Shades for Migraine Urges Insurers to Provide Better Access to Life-Changing Migraine Treatments

Global awareness campaign, Shades for Migraine, asks participants to sign a petition to eliminate insurance barriers such as step-therapy.

Providence, R.I. (May 15, 2020) – Shades for Migraine, an international awareness campaign, is asking participants to take their support for people with migraine one step further by signing and sharing a petition urging healthcare payors to provide better access to life-changing migraine treatments by eliminating barriers like step-therapy and high copays.

The petition has a goal to reach 50,000 signatures by December 31, 2020. At that time, the petition will be shared with the 32 leading migraine and pain organizational partners, including the American Migraine Foundation, National Headache Foundation, Headache and Migraine Policy Forum, Global Healthy Living Foundation and US Pain Foundation, so it can be brought to the attention of insurers and government agencies that provide healthcare assistance.

The options for treating migraine – new medications, neuromodulators, psychological training and lifestyle training – have never been so plentiful or effective, but they are not all covered or equally available at an affordable price. Some companies who develop migraine treatments have provided patients with savings programs to make these treatments more affordable. Once the savings programs expire, many patients will be left battling healthcare payors for continued coverage of the medications they rely on.

For migraine patients residing in the US, insurers require them to “fail” two migraine treatments in one category (acute or preventative) before certain treatments are covered. This policy is called “step edits” or “step therapy”. Step edits force patients to endure a trial and error process and obstruct healthcare providers from prescribing the most effective medications with the fewest side effects and drug interactions. For patients in other parts of the world, some healthcare systems limit access to a full range of treatment options through high copays, limited coverage or no coverage.

“We are aligned with the efforts of Shades for Migraine to advocate for patient access for novel treatment options while ensuring affordability across the board, regardless of a patient’s insurance type, income level, and previous medical history. ” said BJ Jones, Chief Commercial Officer, Migraine and Common Diseases, Biohaven Pharmaceuticals.

“With more than 8 million people reached last year, Shades for Migraine is the perfect platform to effect change. We are hoping to leverage that support to help reshape the future of people living with migraine,” said Frederick Godley, MD and president of the Association of Migraine Disorders.

Shades for Migraine’s petition can be found at www.change.org/MigrainePetition. More information on the Shades for Migraine campaign can be found at ShadesForMigraine.org The Shades for Migraine campaign is supported by Eli Lilly and Co. and Allergan.

About Shades for Migraine

Shades for Migraine is a global awareness campaign started in 2017 by the Association of Migraine Disorders. The campaign challenges people to wear sunglasses on June 21 to show their support for the 1 billion people living with migraine worldwide. The campaign is supported and run by a coalition of more than 40 headache, migraine and pain organizations and bloggers from around the world.

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