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cindel

Can't afford the test strips

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Hi, This is my first time posting...I was recently told that I needed to check my blood sugars in the morning. I was giving a Freestyle Flash meter from my doctor. Problem is, insurance will NOT cover the test strips or the lancets. I can't afford to buy the the test strips. The pharmacist told me about a program that some drug reps have called co-pay. Does anyone know about this? From what I gather, the co-pay card takes off a certain amount of money from the cost of the test strips.

 

How do you contact the drug reps to get one of these???? I'm just getting overwhelmed and not sure what to do. I've only got 6 strips left that came with my meter. Is there a place online to buy these at a reasonable cost?

 

I know I have to change my diet but where does one start?

Thank you

~cindel

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Hi Cindel. My daughter got free medication for a short time, the pharmacist gave us lists of names to apply to. I do not know if they do the same for testing supplies, but you should ask. I hope you get it worked out soon. Maybe you can get your doctor to give you more samples until you find more help.

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Hi cindel,

 

I know what you mean. I don't have insurance at all right now and because I'm working for myself. I can't get insured because I'm a high risk, geeess! I've never heard about the co-pay plan thing so I'll be watching this post but if you need to buy I found American Diabetes Wholesale online has pretty good prices.

 

Good Luck...and Welcome!

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Walmart sells a meter (under $10) that the strips are about $22/50 to go in it. The brand name is "ReliOn". I think it's about as cheap as you will find just shopping regular.

 

My insurance does cover my strips, but I like to test "a lot". I have bought strips for my One Touch Ultra for around $50/100 from eBay in the past.

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I know the price of having diabetes can be overwhelming. Test strips are expensive and some are covered by insurance while others are not. Find out from your insurance company which test strips are considered "formulary". Once you find out which test strips ARE covered, call that meter company and let them know that your insurance company will cover the strips, but you can't afford the meter. Odds are, the company will want your insurance company's business and they will send you a meter for free. Make sure you know how many strips your insurance company will cover monthly so you don't exceed the monthy allowance.

 

As far as diets go, there are many that people follow here. Go through the archives on this site and you will find many good ideas for low carb diets that will help you with your numbers.

 

I am glad you found us. There are great people here and lots of help.

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I agree with Nancy. Contact your insurance to find out what is covered and then contact that company about getting a free meter from them and using their strips.

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Hi Cindel and welcome to the forums! Here I go, pushing my True Track meter again. LOL. Well, Walgreen's sells them and often, if you buy 100 strips for $48, your meter is free. The strips run about $48 for 100 and $25 for 50. Lancets that will fit the TT pen are $5.95 for a box of 100. The TT meter usually tests within 10 points (higher or lower) of my One Touch Ultra2, the one my diabetes educator loves.

 

Otherwise, please do follow the excellent advice you've received here about finding supplies your insurance will cover. Frequent monitoring is the ONLY way to know what's going on with your body, especially in the beginning.

 

Good luck!

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Welcome Cindel!

 

Most insurance companies will provide a meter of their choice and then only charge the minimum copay for the strips. Did they offer you a meter or are they just refusing to pay for anything dealing with your diabetes?

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I am going thru some test strip problems at the moment, too. my original script was for testing only 4 times a day, and since I have gone on insulin I test at least 8 times a day. I am almost out and the insurance won't pay for more until next month. I am trying to get it worked out. I can't afford to buy them myself at $104 a box! The link someone posted above has some pretty good prices, though, I may order a small box to get me thru until my insurance business gets straightened out. I use the OneTouch Ultra, the strips are very spendy.

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Welcome Cindel, I cant advise you about the strips as I am not n the USA and I have private health care here...but just wanted to welcome you anyway.! :)

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It just crossed my mind -- has your doctor written a prescription for the strips? Maybe that's the problem (if so, easy to fix).

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Welcome Cindel! You've been given tons of good advice already, so I'll just leave it at Welcome aboard! You can learn a lot here, so post often and ask lots of questions.

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Thank you for the welcome everyone. :)

 

My insurance company won't pay for ANYTHING doing with diabetes. That's would be the problem. I just don't understand why. I will definitely call again and talk to whoever can actually give me straight answers.

 

Welcome Cindel!

 

Most insurance companies will provide a meter of their choice and then only charge the minimum copay for the strips. Did they offer you a meter or are they just refusing to pay for anything dealing with your diabetes?

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Cindel, does your insurance pay for any medications or is it a hospital or doctor's office only type insurance?

 

If you don't have drug coverage, i'd suggest getting one of the "generic" meters from some place like Walmart, as they are much less expensive. Also, some use E-bay to buy strips, but be care of expiration dates.

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Welcome to the forum, Cindel

 

Wow........I can't believe your insurance company won't pay for anything diabetes related. That makes no sense at all!

 

Karen

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Thank you for the welcome everyone. :)

 

My insurance company won't pay for ANYTHING doing with diabetes. That's would be the problem. I just don't understand why. I will definitely call again and talk to whoever can actually give me straight answers.

Depending on the state, I don't think that's legal. Most states have mandates for diabetes supplies. Maybe they'll only cover it if you mail order?

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Cindel, I agree with Linda. I'm assuming you don't have prescription coverage with your insurance and that's why they won't cover it. Or is there some other reason that you know of?

 

Depending on the state, I don't think that's legal. Most states have mandates for diabetes supplies. Maybe they'll only cover it if you mail order?

 

If his company doesn't have a prescription rider attached to the insurance plan that's perfectly legal. If they do have one, they may simply be stating you must only use this brand and/or order it from here, again, totally legal with regards to the law.

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Hi, Cindel,

A few thoughts:

* Ask your doc about meters/strips. The comp reps often give them away and they fill up storage rooms--my doc gave me *2* One-touch Ultras (I like to carry one around and leave one at home). And, of course, they all come with extra strips.

* The meter companies also often offer "rebates" that result in them being free--the recurring need for strips is where they make your money--so if you call and ask the company for a rebate-eligibile meter, you'd get one with more strips.

* Depending on how you get your insurance, see if the insurance company has a different plan you can rollover to that will upgrade you to one that covers your diabetes supplies. Make sure it's something like a "rollover" that doesn't result in a pre-existing condition "look back"--those won't cover your diabetes for a period of time. If they do, it will of course depend on whether you can afford the new plan ... :confused:

* Ask the meter company about "compassionate use" programs. Like insulin companies, there are some companies that have programs to diminish their bad rep for price gouging and excessive profits by providing some free or low-cost supplies to people who truly can't afford it. It may not be easy to find, but if you call and are persistent, you may find it. It also may mean calling another company and getting a completely new meter, but if you can get free strips out of it, it would be worth it.

* If you happen to be in the state of NY, then your insurance company is lying to you, because they're required to cover all diabetes supplies.

 

Good luck!

 

EDIT:

The American Diabetes Association may have a state-by-state guide on which states are required to cover diabetes supplies

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You may still be able to get a free Accu Chek Aviva with 60 strips by calling 1-800-456-3431. It comes with the MultiClick lancing device and 2 drums.

Check out some of the other posts to find other free meter offers. They come with a few strips. This could help until you can find a better solution.

Good luck. (((((((((((((((Hugs))))))))))))))))))).

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I read this thread and it simply annoyed me to no end. How in the name of Zeus's hineyhole can a diabetic that MUST test their blood glucose be denied life necessity items such as test strips and lancets? This is the United States, a part of what we pay in taxes is supposed to be specifically for social programs to provide for those unable to do so on their own. Not everyone is as fortunate as those of us with health insurance, it angers me to no end to when I consider that there are diabetics that are treated as disposable people based upon this very thing. I m taxed for everything I earn or buy, I'd like to think I get my dag blessed money's worth for my taxes. My insurance pays outrageous prices for things, I'd like to think that medical supply companies can kick down some of these things to those less fortunate than I. (Sorry, I am spiked today, so, my mood is foul).

 

So, I was suficiently annoyed, I was motivated to do some looking about in google, I found the "Partnership for Prescription Assistance" and they are supposed to help with this kind of thing by providing at no cost these supplies, including medication to those unable to afford it, here's the link: https://www.pparx.org/Intro.php

 

I take my oath upon it that I believe that there is a special place in H E Double Hockeysticks for fat cat dirty rotten stinking rich insurance company executives, for in truth, there is an inherent thread of justice in creation that is metted out in spades and without mercy but instead, dripping with contempt and fury.

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Welcome to the club.

 

I have seen references here that say to ask the meter companies for help if you are uninsured. If your insurance really isn't covering anything for diabetes, then the uninsured options should certainly help you. I'd visit websites for meter companies and see if they offer any help for the uninsured.

Mike

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Sarge, you do have a way with words. LOL.

 

These are the same insurance companies who, unless you buy a stinkin' expensive dental rider, do not cover dental care, even though we all know poor dental care can lead to a host of ugly complications for which the insurance company will pay.

 

I'm wrangling with mine about my diabetes education class. They want to call it major medical and make me pay for the first $400 of it. However, they will pay for dialysis and all the nasty complications that inevitably follow uncontrolled diabetes.

 

My theory is they WANT us to die off sooner! Less overall expense that way. They may lay out a few thousand for dialysis, but the odds are overwhelmingly in their favor that we will not live very long on it and will die, thus ending the money they are having to pay and presumably, decreasing the surplus population.

 

In the immortal words of Shakespeare, they are: "foul, bunch-backed toads" and "elvish-mark'd, abortive, rooting hogs."

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Welcome to the foums, Cindel. :)

 

Is your insurance not going to pay for doctor visits for monitoring your diabetes and for getting prescriptions? Will they not pay for lab work if it is related to diabetes? Is your insurance to cover "catastrophic" health events only? If you don't mind, I'd be interested in knowing the name of the company and the name of the plan.

 

I had to change insurance plans not long ago and my out of pocket expenses went up quite a bit, so I'm really empathetic.

 

Make sure to read this forum frequently and get yourself a couple of books from the library to really understand diabetes and the options to handle it. The more you know, the more you can get yourself into a good place with it.

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I just started reading through these and i had some questions. I am 19 and i've been type 1 for almost 4 years. 5 days before my 16th birthday i was diagnosed. I am on the insulin pump and have been for about 6 months. I was recently taken off my insurance becasue i turned 19, and was to old to recieve it. I couldnt find any plans that i could afford, and ones that were free. I go to college full time and work full time, and i've been on my own( money wise) since i was 17. I am recieving this "donated" type of coverage for my insulin only, but i cannot get help with my quick set infusion sets, reserviors, and test strips, or doctors visits. I havent been to my doctor in almost a year because it is just simply too expensive and with everything else i have to pay,which run me over $200.00 a month, i cannot afford much more. Does anyone know of organzations or anything like that that might donate or help pay for this stuff, im desparate and about to scream from all the stress. Thank you!

candace. :)

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