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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Just my personal "Point of View", POV for any abbreviation freaks. :p

<rant> FlexPen:

First, what possible reason does the FlexPen have for even existing?

1) People in general ( the public, not the patient ) are less likely to freak out or go into shock (or call the cops to report this involuntary "drug addict") when they see a FlexPen (looks like a "Magic Marker") instead of a medical syringe and medical vial. So it is a useful disguise for a medical devise in public.

2)If NOT used properly ( NOT changing the needle each time before using ), it can be more convenient than a vial/syringe in public.

3) If destroyed by heat, one only louses 3 ml, not 10 ml of U100.

4) Ridiculously expensive but insurance will pay for it.


Now the rant:

I am in shock at the price of this "convenience", it costs over $500 a month to use this inferior system, not even considering the cost of visiting an AMA doctor or the time wasted and delay of treatment waiting for an appointment.

My total cost for my medication as none prescription at Walmart (Humulin N and Humulin R plus syringes) was around $75 a month, this cost over six times that! The needles alone for the FlexPen (200 count) cost around $71 at Walgreens.

The FlexPen is sloppy, inaccurate, and even dangerous if trying to administer less than 3 IU of insulin, that is, if one tries to inject 1 IU, one can receive 1, 2, or more IU insulin.

When compared to the vial/syringe system the FlexPen acts more like an expensive, fancy toy.

When using it it per instructions (replacing and removing needle for each use) the FlexPen is as much a PITA as the syringe/vial method.

Also one has to waste insulin to get rid of air which is usually not necessary with a real syringe.

</rant>

But: One is required to buy 5 FlexPens amounting to 15 ml, not 10 ml, so it might only cost over 4 times as much as Humulin.

REF:

NOVOLOG FLEXPEN SYRINGE DrugInfo
Quantity:15
Supply:30 days WALGREENS
$232.81 / 1.5 = $155.20 per 10 ml ... / $25 = 6 times more expensive!

Humulin R 10 ml vial DrugInfo
Quantity:10
Supply:30 days Walmart ReliOn Non prescription
$25.00

NOVOLOG 100 UNIT/ML VIAL DrugInfo
Quantity:30
Supply:90 days RIGHTSOURCE
$327.84

Do I smell a RipOff in here somewhere?. :mad:

comments welcome

ColaJim
 

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Cola Jim - Rip Off might be a mild term for it...

Pricing in my county is slightly above what you indicate @$236.99 for a 5 pack of the Novolog pens. To get that price I am using a Missouri Pharmacy pricing web site MoRx Price Compare Good info for those without insurance, prices are only in Missouri though. So while some counties here might save a few dollars, is it worth the gas to drive the miles?
Ordering a 90 day supply via the 'reputable' Canadian Pharmacies might be a good option for those without insurance or a ridiculously high co-pay. Another consideration with/without insurance (co-pay) is the needle. At this time myself having insurance helps minimize the costs associated, I certainly do understand the problems that not having insurance would create. Therefore the 'older' insulin from ReliOn might be the only option for many.
 

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An other consideration is getting the pens thru the mail, you have NO IDEA what temperature they have endured ... freezing or broiling.

I suspect the pricing is BECAUSE OF the lovely contracts with insurers, not in spite of it. One more thing that needs examining in our health system!!!! OTOH, that pricing for the uninsured is the unrealistic element ... not the contract pricing.

The pen itself is a cheap, flimsy thing. If vials and syringes were covered, I would prefer them. I worked in biomedical labs and know the importance of accuracy, and YEAH, I would be perfectly comfortable and happy with syringes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
foxl

foxl:

In that I am a very poor old man, I can only afford ReliOn myself, if that, but I paid Humana $41.00 x 12 months to get Medicare Part D, and Medicare said that I was so poor that I only had to pay $6.30 each for prescription. So I paid:
$6.30 for 5 Levemir FlexPens
$6.30 for 5 Novolog FlexPens
$6.30 for 2 boxes of 100 needles
The catch is that I am only allowed $2,840 each year for Rx medications, so I would run out of insurance in less than 6 months if I used these FlexPens regularly.

But it has been great to see first hand what is available in a richer man's world.

PS:
Order your FREE CONTOUR® Meter
https://www.contouroffer.com/ContourUpgrade_New.aspx?offer=11_q1_pen
Note: the site would not work for me so I just called 1-800-348-8100 to order it. It came just now, great complete kit with 50 strips. Ordered it last Friday, three day delivery.

ColaJim

An other consideration is getting the pens thru the mail, you have NO IDEA what temperature they have endured ... freezing or broiling.

I suspect the pricing is BECAUSE OF the lovely contracts with insurers, not in spite of it. One more thing that needs examining in our health system!!!! OTOH, that pricing for the uninsured is the unrealistic element ... not the contract pricing.

The pen itself is a cheap, flimsy thing. If vials and syringes were covered, I would prefer them. I worked in biomedical labs and know the importance of accuracy, and YEAH, I would be perfectly comfortable and happy with syringes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
update

For home use I have found the FlexPen big/bulky, heavy, and I find it more difficult and awkward to use than a syringe and vial. Also a syringe is marked at 1/2 units and the FlexPen can only be used on full units.

Still seems less embarrassing to use in public and makes one look less like a drug addict.

ColaJim
 

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Flex pens are actually cheaper for people that only use 1 pen a month versuses vial. Vials are only good for 28 and not much longer once they are opened. So for those that are using one pen a month they are actually cheaper cause you only need to fill it 3 times in one year and not 12. like you do with vials. Good thing you don't pump or you would have a cow about how expensive those perscriptions are.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Adjitater

True from your point of view I'm sure, but I have used vials for 2 months or more ( I always refrigerate them). And my current almost empty vial of Novolog that I still use is marked "June"

If I was on one of those over priced pumps I might be complaining more about not being able to use it because of the ridiculously high cost of infusion sets. :D

Flex pens are actually cheaper for people that only use 1 pen a month versuses vial. Vials are only good for 28 and not much longer once they are opened. So for those that are using one pen a month they are actually cheaper cause you only need to fill it 3 times in one year and not 12. like you do with vials. Good thing you don't pump or you would have a cow about how expensive those perscriptions are.
 

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If you had a need to use them you would not complain. After 36 years of shots it was obvious that shots would no longer work for me so a pump was the only way left.
 
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