People with private health insurance can now save up to $50 on their co-payment on every monthly refill of a Viramune prescription for up to one year, according to an announcement by the drug’s maker, Boehringer Ingelheim (BI). The Co-Pay Savings Program does not include BI’s protease inhibitor Aptivus (tipranavir).

The program is the first to use a MasterCard debit card as the method for handling the co-pay. According to a BI spokesperson, using a point-of-purchase debit card will greatly expand the number of pharmacies that will participate in the program and allow many mail-order pharmacies to participate, something that most of the other co-pay programs are unable to do.

As with similar programs from other companies, people on Medicaid, Medicare or ADAP are not eligible for BI’s co-payment savings, nor are residents of Massachusetts. BI is making the cards available only through health care providers. Once customers receive their cards, they must activate them by calling 888.998.4726 or visiting

People who do not have public or private health insurance and cannot afford to pay for their Viramune or Aptivus can contact the BI patient assistance program at 800.556.8317 or visit