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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am so new to this I just want to ask a question. With being a type two diabetic do I have to look forward to a lot of doctor visits. I am paying out of pocket. I have no insurance at my job since I am a pain intern. That is the only bad thing about my job. I had my initial visit. I got blood work this Friday and I got to go back that next Tuesday for a check up. How often do diabetics usually have to visit the doctors. :(
 

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WHAT, I got D
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Even when I was on insulin I saw my doctor very rarely and only when I am having a problem. I am on no Rx's at the current time, have no insurance and everything is out of pocket. I do most of my A1C thru Walmart or Walgreens. The meter I use is SideKick from Wally World, $20 for a meter and 50 strips.
 

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The faster you get stable, the cheaper it becomes. Also you can order your own blood work at mymedlab with out doctors script. They will email you the results.


I guess since I have just been diagnose is why I have to go so much. The initial visit, the blood work visit, and then the results visit.
 

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Also you can order your own blood work at mymedlab with out doctors script. They will email you the results.
You can also compare prices with iNeedLabs.com (formerly PrePaidLab.com) to see which might be cheaper for whatever test (or combination) you might want.
 

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As MCS has said the quicker you can get bgs into a normal range the less you will have to go to a doctor. I have insurance but it is high deductible so I have to pay the first $6000 of bills before insurance kicks in. I usually only go for diabetes checks once or twice a year. I don't do the full lab tests every year because I won't go on statins. I check my HbA1c at home and just report it to the doctor. Also make sure you discuss with your doctor that you are uninsured and only do the tests that are medically necessary. My doctor even suggested I use an independent lab rather than the hospital lab. Also tell him you want to start off with generic drugs which are a lot cheaper. If the generics don't work then you can go to the more expensive drugs. Also search out your area for free or reduced priced clinics.
 

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I won't iterate what the others have advised, but I will tell you that when our doc became aware of our financial straits, he even gave a big discount on my office calls, as much as he was allowed to by his group, he always prescribed generic drugs & steered me to the cheapest places to get them. He was a godsend!
 

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before I got my old age certificate aka medicare. I went to a free low cost clinic. when I had my labs done , full work up, it was $30.

I had to go downtown to the free clinic next to the hospital for my eye exams. free.
they are out there you just have to find them.
 

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Had my blood work done today $30. Got to go back for the results and see the doctor which will be $25.
Did you say you are doing this out of pocket? I just did my benefits package at work and my co-pays will be 40 for specialist (endo) and then 40 for labs that is with 120 per month premium not counting any prescripts. It seems it will be cheaper to not have insurance?

Good for you. Can I ask where you live and how you are doing this? I am not trying to pry into your personal life, but my doctors have prescribed so many things I cannot afford to go anymore and I make decent money.

I pay 40 for doctor 40 for labs. then I pay 30 for novolog plus 15 for strips 15 for lancets that I don't usually get. I just use the same one so many times until it feels like I am stabbing myself with a pencil. Then I pay 20 for blood thinners and 30 for steroids. I pay 15 for needles (although I don't need them every month as I am on a pump) Of which I pay an annual amount for pump supplies which come out to be cheaper than needles but I still need them for backups. I have miscellaneous other 15 the 30 a mount drugs that I complain don't do anything. Some months I can pay up to 500 dollars for prescripts alone. I can sort of afford it now, but if I ever lose my job there is no way I can keep this up. I was wondering how people do this? I was reading other posts and saw that they get strips from Walmart and Amazon I am definitely going to look into that. If I could get novolog from Mexico or Canada that would be great too. I am up for anybodies advice on how to survive this madness.

Sorry for hijacking your thread but I am hoping to get some answers that may help us both.
 

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Adrenaline, have you checked to make sure if any of the drugs you are prescribed come in generic form? If so, ask doctor to switch you to that. Usually they are cheaper than brand names. Also, see if you can do mail order through your prescription plan and if they have a specific mail order pharmacy. Many times mail order ends up saving you one copay for a three month supply of med (you pay equivalent of two copays rather than three for three month supply). I also found out that with my specific insurance plan, the doctor ordered 66 days supply of test strips for me and because of the way the insurance is written, I was being charged three copays. My insurance benefit reads "up to a 33 day supply", however if it is for more than one month, then the insurance goes according to 30 day supply, so 66 days ran into the 3rd month by 6 days. I would have paid $40.00 for 6 day supply rather than 30 day supply. Doesn't make sense to me, but this is what health care reform is doing to private insurance policies. Sad.
Also, you might see if any pharmacy/drug store in your area offers no cost diabetic meds (generic form) such as metformin, glyburide, etc. I get my metformin from our local grocery store pharmacy free. Every little bit helps!
I also use the same lanclet to test until it hurts, then I change it. I'm the only one using the darn thing so I'm not afraid of being infected with anything, and sometimes I use the same pen needle cap if I am running low. I typically do not like to do that because with the insulin it burns sometimes, but it also cost me $40.00 for one month supply...and I understand that the costs can add up. My copay used to only be $20.00, but it went up this past year.
Just some thoughts on what you can look in to. Also, be careful about getting meds from other countries. Keep in mind they do not always tests products like the USA does, so you might end up with inferior meds. Just be careful with that one. Make sure you use reputable places out of country.
Good Luck!
 

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naynay, Thank you for you response,

You are getting metformin without a prescription? My doctors are weird about stuff. I asked if I could go generic and was told there is no generic novolog. I have been bit by the 33 day prescript also. I usually just don't fill the order for $30 for a 6 day period. It always perplexes the pharmacy. They get all upset that I won't buy my drugs for one month. I hord as much as I can so I don't have to. I checked on the mail order thing too and I have gotten burned that way too. They say that I have to buy 3 months mail order but I only end up getting barely over a month of stuff and when I call they say that my pharmacy is doing it wrong and it is illegal. Plus my novolog has to be refrigerated and I live in Arizona, By the time I get home it is sitting on my front porch boiling.
If novolog was my only problem, I can deal with that, but they want me to take drugs that I cannot stop taking, That is my biggest scare because sometimes I just can't afford it. On the times I need needles, lancets, steriods, 2 different blood thinners, cholesterol medicine, and more preventative drugs, and a doctors visit it is over 500 dollars, that really puts me away for a couple of months. I tell the doctors that some of those really don't do anything for me and she says I need to take more. i am really at the end of my rope and am super stressed at work now especially because no all of my copays went up even more, Add another $80 in copays to my doctor. I just don't understand how people do it. I know if I lose my job, I will just die because all of this is out of the question at that point.

The topper is I am going to have to stop the pump soon because not only did my co-pays go up, they don't pay 100% anymore, so now I have to pay 10 percent of the doctor visits and 10% of pump supplies. I just can't do it they have priced me out of the market.

Thanks for indulging me sometimes it helps to write it all down. I am not sure how.
 

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Adrenaline...I understand your vent...trust me I do. Sometimes it is cheaper to buy supplies without using pharmacy. I have a few different meters, and one of them I have is a Bayer Logic. I bought test strips for it as a backup when I run out for the month on my One Touch and it cost less than my copay for the same amount for the One Touch strips. Go figure. The One Touch strips however are very expensive out of pocket (over $110.00 for 100 strips). Craziness! I do not get my metformin without a prescription; the pharmacy just offers it (metformin is generic for glucophage) for free...no copay. But, you do have to have a written prescription from your doctor to get it. No, if they gave me metformin without a prescription, I do not think they would still be in business :).
Here you are, a working individual with benefits, yet you cannot afford the copays, coinsurance, or deductibles that are set forth by that plan. Unfortunately many companies are going to stop offering health insurance benefits because of the healthcare reform that Obama is pushing through. It is a sad state of affairs. I work in the medical/health industry (I'm a Medical Biller) and the insurance companies keep raising the write offs and decreasing what they will allow in payment to participating providers. So, if a doctor charges $150.00 for a visit, they are only getting approximately $50-$60 for that visit by insurance. They are writing the rest of the charge off. Many people think that doctor's are making money hand-over-fist, but private practices are really not. And in the long run, that affects my bottom line as well because my pay depends on those payments as well as any type of raise. It's a vicious circle.
As far as the 33 day supply versus 30 day supply thing, I just get one month at a time. The pharmacy said I can do that even if the doctor prescribed 66 days. So, that's what I did. But it still costs $40 a month just for the test strips, $40 a month for the needle caps for insulin, $40 per prescription for each insulin (I take 2), and I take Zoloft that costs me almost $50 a month (I cannot use the generic because I am allergic to something in it, but brand name Zoloft I'm fine), and Crestor (no generic available yet) that costs me another $40 a month. On top of the supplements and special foods that need to be bought for diabetics, you need to almost be a millionaire to afford all of it. I guess it is depressing when you add it all up, but what are your choices? Oh well...I guess we just must find other ways to survive all this. Good Luck on your quest...I will be starting off on mine about now too!
 

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Renee,

You are so nice. I really appreciate your patience. I do think that it is sad that with insurance my co-pay is the same as what they pay. I am not seeing the advantage to the insurance. I think I would be better off just not having it. My co-pay is 60 dollars. and I have a 3500 deductable with about 120 am month and they get buy paying 50 bucks. I truly hope you are wrong about Obama's plan. I hope he has thought about stuff like this. I think I am going to look into quitting my work plan and finding different better one.

Thanks again for putting up with me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I live in Georgia. I just looked in the phone book and saw a site for this doctor office that said discount prices for visits and chepear if we find out you are diabetic. It was South Central Primary Care. They prescribed Metformin 500 mg. I was able to get the med for $4 at Walmart. They have a list of their cheaper meds on their website. Y doctor gave me free samples for sinus problems (a month worth) and a diabetic kit. Hopes this helps out!!
 
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