Mid-west retailer Meijer Inc. has this week extended its free medical program by offering a generic substitute for Lipitor for free in all its 199 Meijer pharmacies.

The generic substitute for Lipitor going under the name Atorvastatin calcium is being offered with an aim of helping families stay heart healthy. The company says that they want to continue to be true to their commitment to provide low cost solutions for families by making cholesterol lowering medication available for free to the customers who need this medication.

The free medication is being offered for customers with a doctor’s prescription and will be filled up to 30 tablets per fill in 10, 20, 40 and 80 mg strengths.

Atorvastatin calcium (a statin drug) works by inhibiting the enzyme which plays a central role in the production of cholesterol in the liver. Statins are used in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases associated with high cholesterol levels in the body as they slow down the production of cholesterol in the liver. According to the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics annual report of 2010, the use of statins has increased over the past 20 years as secondary preventive measures.

Based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Meijer Inc. has had free medical programs in the past (since October 2006) that have enabled many people in the states of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky, access to free medication where the grocery stores are located. This helps many of the beneficiaries of these free medical programs to live a healthier lifestyle, as well as keeping their families healthy also. Meijer’s move will make it the first retailer in the mid-west to offer free medication for the generic substitute for Lipitor.