DBlogWeek 2017: The Cost of Chronic Illness

Diabetes Blog Week prompt for Tuesday:  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?

Oh boy.  The cost of a chronic illness.  What a hot button issue that is. 

I am so angry at this right now.  Having a chronic illness (more likely than not) costs a pretty penny.  AKA, thousands of dollars.

I think about the amazing vacations, nicer car, second home…RETIREMENT PLAN I could have right now, if not for all those medical bills.  I just want to slam my head against a wall after talking to insurance companies.

What do you MEAN insulin is a PREVENTATIVE MEDICINE!?!?!?!?!?  Preventing me from DYING!?

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Deep breathes…  Deep breathes…

This may sound very weird but I was extremely FORTUNATE when I was on Medicaid last year when I was unemployed.  Everything was covered, even a new insulin pump when mine of 9 years crapped out.  (I miss you Gidget!)  Insulin, Victoza, a new kidney drug, test strips… no more than $10 a month.  No co-pays or outlandish bills for a doctor’s visit.  Pump supplies.  Only thing not covered was a CGM and hopefully that is moving through so it is.

Now I have a job and I pay $3,000 out of pocket before any insurance kicks in and $6,000 for prescriptions.  Oh wait, I mean “preventative medications” which includes every single med I am on.  Novolog, oh wait, I mean Humalog.  Not covered.  Contour test strips, oh wait, I mean Verio strips, not covered.  And a whole slew of others.  They say, contact us and we’ll give you another option.  OH, effing WAIT!  The medications you say you don’t cover and you give me an alternative too—are STILL NOT COVERED.

And that doesn’t even include how much I spend every two weeks for coverage.

So yes, the struggle is real.

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And it’s not just monetary either.  This disease costs us emotionally, physically, mentally.  The discussions I have with insurance agents where I am calm on the outside but RAGING on the inside.  All the BS my doctor and d-staff goes through trying to get my meds covered.  My stomach turns knots when I use my credit card to pay off a large medical bill.  Will I be able to cover it?  What do I have to cut out of my life to make sure I can afford it.  I cry over the amounts of money I feel is wasted on my own health.  That shouldn’t be the case.  I can’t even imagine what people do without any insurance.  That fine line where you make $500 too much to be covered by the state but buying your own leaves you bankrupt.  Even when you are still covered with a pre-existing condition, you are still paying more than everyone else!

I know this post doesn’t help anyone.  Not even myself.  I’d like to say the rant was therapeutic but it’s not anymore.  I’ve been yelling about this for years.

Does anyone know who I can fight to make preventative meds not include medications that actually keep me alive?  How is a blood pressure medication (which there are hundreds of options including generics) be covered?  Relax, eat healthier and exercise to help lower your blood.  I can do all that and still have diabetes a-holes.

Okay, I must be done because if I don’t end it here, I’ll just get even madder and then I’ll have to start taking a blood pressure medication.  Full. Circle.

 

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3 thoughts on “DBlogWeek 2017: The Cost of Chronic Illness

  1. The price of care in all areas has escalated at such a fast rate it is amazing. I am not certain exactly why but I do agree raising our voice is important.

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