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In this tough economy, it can be challenging to manage the cost of diabetes care. If you're one of the many unemployed or underemployed individuals, you may be without health insurance. Even with good health and without any outstanding medical bills, monthly medical expenses add up, from co-pays for prescription medications to non-prescription items such as healthy food.
It's been reported that in these challenging economic times, people with diabetes have cut back on — or even gone without — doctor visits, insulin, medications and blood-sugar testing as they've lost income and health insurance.
Looking for ways to spend less money may be difficult if you have diabetes. But if you have diabetes and don't closely monitor and control your disease, you dramatically increase your risk for diabetes complications. The cost of treating such complications can be much greater than what might be spent on medications and supplies.
The American Diabetes Association offers the following tips for helping manage the cost of diabetes care:
Insulin and related supplies
The price of good diabetes control is high, but the long-term cost of not staying healthy is higher. In what ways are you managing the cost of diabetes care?
Sara J. Carlson, R.N., C.D.E.
Peggy Moreland, R.N., C.D.E.
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Jennae: We apprecitate your note of caution! Thank you for your input.
Use caution shopping Amazon for test strips because you can't check for "freshness" until you receive the product. Not all vendors on Amazon are reliable. I was burnt badly when purchasing 4 boxes of 100 for myself and a co-worker. They were only 1 month from expiration, and we got stuck with the return expenses!
I only buy direct Amazon direct items now (not from the other retail sellers/shops listed within product searches on the Amazon.)
try belviq weight loss pill also lowers a1c
by 1.0 lost 14.5 lbs the first month except i have to pay for it myself ins wont cover
In India quite a number of people control sugar level just by eating bitter melon vegetable. Ginger is also very good to lower the blood sugar. This is not a theory; but has been used for thousands of years.
I am a type 2 diabetic. I pay for insulin only. The VA supplies, free of charge, my test strips and syringes.
i just found out that i have type 2 and i cant afford a meter or the stripes could someone help me please thank u so much
I had been buying my insulin in Canada - it came packed in a box with surrounding ice packs. It is not available anymore and I am paying 3X the price. Why is US insulin SO dang expensive? I bought some in France years ago and it was less expensive there too.
WALMART has the least expensive test strips with their meter ReliOn.
Good news: I heard an ad that Walgreen's is offering their house brand of test strips for about $15. Yes, you'd have to buy their Walgreen's meter, too, but that is only $20 or so. I didn't catch how big a supply you would get for the $15.00; however, this sounds like it's worth looking into! Especially for the uninsured. The test strips I use (currently covered by my insurance) average over $700.00 for a 90-day supply. Isn't that outrageous! If I lose my insurance I will definitely check out what Walgreen's is offering!
I had my first A1C approx. 6 mos. ago, and result was a 7.7. I was determined to change my eating habits and used no medication. 6 months later I had my second test.
I am 5' 5", 115 lbs, 669 years old.
The results of my test was a 6.0.I am very proud of my accompishment.
I check my sugar 2 times every day.
Every morning and every night before bed. I work on a treadmill 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes. I will not let my type 2 diabetes get the upper hand. I have too much left to do.
Antje: Thank you for posting further patient assistance resources. Good resources! You mentioned test strips and that brought to mind that online shopping places like Amazon.com often have test strips at half the price of pharmacies.
This comment is for Joseph:
When my doctor wants me to take a new drug, I immediately ask if there is a generic equivalent.
I also ask what the cost of that drug will be. Doctors generally have no clue about the cost.
Get the script and call your pharmacy.
Ask about your out of pocket cost.
Ask if there is a program to help with the cost. If the drug is very new, your doctor may have the coupon to get into the discount program.( Ask the nurse; they usually know these things)
If the doctor orders prescriptions directly over the computer, insist on knowing the cost FIRST.
Be a pro-active patient: this is your body, your life, your wallet. You determine what is good for you.
I read your post with great interest. I am a T1 diabetic, with a pump and a continuous glucose monitor. I am happy to be employed by a hospital system that provides very good diabetic supplies coverage but I am very aware of the monthly out of pocket costs. I am also a patient advocate and deal with Patient Assistance Programs all the time. I have a lot of clients who cannot afford their insulin and their testing supplies. I found that most current insulins have a PAP, so if the client qualifies financially, I can sign them up to get their insulin free for 6 months or a year. People who find themselves not being able to afford their insulin should go directly the the manufacturer's site and search for Patient Assistance Program and go from there.
Test strips are much harder to come by, but in upstate New York, certain not-for-profit agencies have started acquiring unused test strips ( the advertise on Craig's List and pay up to twenty dollars) and handing them out to diabetics in need.
Patients in need should always call their local Red Cross, Community Action Agency or Salvation Army and ask if they have such a program.
For all my other medications, I used Walmart Pharmacy and insist on prescriptions that allow me to use their $4 generic program.
I regularly provide an updated list of $4 Generics to my PCP.
Diabetes is all about self-management and self-care. The more we know, the better we can be. Thank you for this blog!
This does not really help with the price of any of these items. The overall price is steep. If you can't afford them, you can't afford them.
I tried to get my medication (oral) reduced by some of these methods but they could not for one reason or another.
It's very frustrating.
I know I need my meds, but I cannot afford them.
$200 for 1 month of 1 type of pills reduced down to $150 is cheaper, but still not affordable.
I have to ration or go without. There is no other way that I can see/find.
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