Glucose test strips are an essential part of managing diabetes. These nifty little strips of plastic and cutting-edge engineering are an important component of keeping your blood sugar levels in check. The total that an average diabetic patient spends on managing their diabetes is over $7,000. Though most of that goes to hospital stays, medical supplies such as diabetes test strips can still make a sizable dent on your budget. But there is a way to somewhat ease the financial burden that buying diabetes test strips might heave upon your shoulders.
Use test strips covered by your insurance. If your medical insurance covers a particular brand, you should use that brand. That way your strips will either be free or you will have a lower co-payment. If you aren’t sure what or if they do cover any particular brand, give your insurance company a call.
Outreach organizations. People who have no insurance or belong to the low-income bracket can opt to try outreach programs. Certain organizations offer assistance with general medical costs including medical supplies and prescription drugs. The Benefits Checkup from the National Council on Aging provides information on saving programs for older adults with limited income. Another organization, RX Outreach, partnered with Prodigy, a meter and strip supply company, provide supplies medical supplies to people who belong to the low-income bracket. There may also be local organizations in your area that provide similar assistance.
Attend local diabetes events. Events like these usually host companies that manufacture medical supplies for people with diabetes. They might give away free strips or meters or provide discount coupons for your medical supplies. You can find a schedule of these events and expos on the American Diabetes Association website.
Prescription Assistance Programs. Some pharmaceutical companies have prescription assistance programs in place to help people who are uninsured or have low income with their medical needs. The Partnership for Prescription Assistance is a free service that assists you in finding programs that will fit your needs.
Buy in bulk. Much like buying groceries in bulk, buying your test strips in bulk can help you save money. However, you need to be cautious about how much you are buying. Make sure that you have the right number of test strips you need for a given amount of time. Remember not to overestimate your needs and waste test strips.
Sell unused test strips. If you do happen to buy too much at a time and end up with a surplus, selling unused diabetic test strips can help you earn some of your money back and, at the same time, help another person out with their diabetic needs. Just make sure that your diabetic test strips have not expired yet or are not close to expiring. Otherwise, there will be legal consequences if you knowingly sell expired test strips and cause medical issues.
Don’t skimp. If you feel like testing less frequently will save you money, it will have the opposite effect in the long run. Testing less frequently could lead to dangerously low or high levels of sugar in your blood because you were not able to accurately monitor your sugar levels. This could lead to you spending more on hospitalization and more medication.