How The Cost Of Diabetes Impacts Care
Diabetes Blog Week (Day 2): Insulin and other diabetes medications and supplies can be costly. Here in the US, insurance status and age (as in Medicare eligibility) can impact both the cost and coverage. So today, let’s discuss how cost impacts our diabetes care. Do you have advice to share? For those outside the US, is cost a concern? Are there other factors such as accessibility or education that cause barriers to your diabetes care?
This is a topic that I have personally dealt with first hand. The cost of diabetes DOES impact our care.
When I was 19 years old-
I was no longer living with my parents. I was dropped from insurance and was pretty thrown to the wolves (as you would say). I worked a minimum wage job and wasn’t provided benefits. The money I did make went to rent, food, and the insulin that I could afford.
The status quo is that “diabetes is manageable”. I would agree, but only when you have the supplies needed to manage.
I only got by—but I wasn’t thriving. I used short acting insulin as my 24/hr insulin by just syringe (which is heavily risky). I then had to re-use syringes until it became painful to use them. I couldn’t afford test strips and would maybe check my blood sugar once or twice a day. Seeing a doctor was completely out of the question at the time.
I applied for Medicaid and Medicare due to income and disability. But was later denied because I didn’t fit into the criteria. I was devastated and felt helpless. I eventually found the patient assistance programs through the pharmaceutical companies that provided the insulin that I use.
I do have insurance and I do have the cool gadgets and necessities. I can’t even begin to tell you how much having access to healthcare coverage means to me. Having what I need in order to live a full functioning life.
I’m still trying to catch up in life from the years that I was suffering. I believe it does take a toll on an individual or family financially/emotionally/ and it affects the ability to prepare for the future.
With diabetes it’s all about trying to survive from one day to the next—and cost should not be an issue.