The price of everything seems to be increasing. Grocery costs, gasoline costs, and, of course, healthcare costs are steadily rising. If you've ever wondered how you were going to pay for your next bottle of insulin or test strips without cutting back on buying necessities like food, I am here to give you some tips. Despite my health insurance, living with diabetes is incredibly expensive. Years ago I had to walk away from my test strips at the pharmacy because I couldn't cover the cost, so I decided to get creative with finding other ways to save money.
Recently while I was out shopping with my sister, I tested my blood sugar and found that I had a high reading of 217. Because I had just downed a non-fat pumpkin spice latte and still had active insulin in my bloodstream, I skipped correcting it with an insulin shot and went on trying on clothing and chatting with my sister. When I got to my car afterward, I realized that I felt a little like I was drunk, so I figured that I'd better test my blood sugar again. It was 58.
The new Accu-Chek Nano was approved for diabetes patients in January 2012, and distribution of the product began in April. Jennifer Aspy, the director of product marketing and operations, sat down with me at the American Association of Diabetes Educators to talk about the merits of this new medical device.
As I listen to the news of the recent Mega Millions jackpot of over $600 million, my dreams aren't about fast cars, vast mansions, or plush vacations. My thoughts revolve around my diabetes. How awesome would it be to have the best care that money can buy?
I wake in the morning with the taste of sour milk on my tongue. I'm sweating, extremely weak and disoriented. My muscles ache at the thought of moving. I have a sick feeling in my stomach, and it's threatening to come up my throat. I'm not sure what day it is. Nausea hits in a wave, sending chills down my spine.
Recently, there has been a great deal of discussion on the subject of testing your blood sugar and taking insulin shots in public. A shocking number of people on social networks have commented that their family members don't want them to test their blood sugar or take their shots in public. They report having to inject in restrooms or even through their clothing to avoid drawing attention or offending their families. One hypersensitive husband even objected when his recently diagnosed wife took a shot in the relative privacy of their car.
There's nothing quite like wondering how you're going to pay for prescriptions. I find it odd that we usually don't know what our out-of-pocket cost will be until we're standing in front of the pharmacy staff and praying that we have enough in our wallet to cover it. I often feel like a reality show contestant waiting for the grand total. My pharmacy-based reality show would probably be called "The Biggest Payer," or perhaps "The Amazing Guess," or, aptly, "Survivor." If you've ever walked away from the pharmacy counter embarrassed, panicked, or depressed, you know the feeling I'm referring to. It's a pain no prescription can cure.
In one of Devon Inglee's artworks, a teddy bear, the symbol of childhood innocence, lies flat on its back with three menacing syringes piercing its furry tummy. In the background, the bear's owner, a small girl, stands above the teddy eating an apple. Inglee writes, "In ‘Tit for Tat,' a sweet girl contently eats an apple while hiding a large syringe behind her back, oblivious to her beloved, yet murdered toy. This piece deals with the process of anger, mourning, and denial associated with my personal diagnosis of a chronic disease." For the 33-year-old art student, this work is about mourning and letting go of preconceived notions and ideas of what the future will be.
An estimated 34 million Americans will be on the road during Labor Day weekend, many of them with type 2 diabetes. Road travel can interfere with blood sugar management and lead to low blood sugar, which can cause serious complications, such as loss of consciousness, if not treated quickly.
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