How Do I Find Low Cost Help for Diabetes Care with No Money and No Insurance?

Patient Expert

Every month, I spend time combing the Q&A area of the site and I notice many questions looking for help to pay for medication, supplies, or guidance for assistance programs. With the current state of unemployment and underemployment these questions are important and need we need to have a collective list of resources. To make this complete, if you have information to share, please add your comments and list resources This will be a collective reference with ongoing updates!

Access to Prescription Drugs:

Partnership for Prescription Assistance is an organization that helps qualifying patients without prescription drug coverage get the medicines they need for free or nearly free! According to their website, "Our mission is to increase awareness for patient assistance programs and boost enrollment of those who are eligible. We offer single point of access to more than 475 public and private programs, including 200 offered by pharmaceutical companies"" Their link is www.pparx.org/en

Select Care Benefits Network is an organization that helps with patient assistance programs and offers a personal care advocate to help you wade through the process of applying for assistance programs.  One of our community member Rosa posted her experience and advice!

Under RXassist, I was able to look up metformin and found the price for under $10.00 and the retailer who worked with this program. You do need to apply for the program. I did find it hard to locate the application, but they also offer a phone number to call.

Find a doctor, prescription assistance, or need help with insurance: http://www.healthcare.gov/index.html

Under healthcare.gov, there is a tab Find Insurance Options. Using my own state and my diabetes as a guide to what is available to me, I had 3 choices, one of which listed affordable healthcare, some of which were listed as free clinics, many free clinics are located in the health department of your local city government. http://finder.healthcare.gov/  

You can also locate affordable healthcare under HSRA, U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources. http://findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov/Search_HCC.aspx

For type 1 diabetes supplies, some of the above works for insulin and test strips as well.

For those in need of a pump, there is Ipump.org. Ipump.org is a non profit that takes donated pumps and has them recertified by the manufacturer and redistributes them free to people living with diabetes who need pump therapy!

Sam's Club, the warehouse store chain, has a program for preventive medicine! Out of everything I found this to be the most innovative idea!  For $99, a customer can sign up for an annual preventive medicine service. It is not insurance, or treatment by a physician. It is essentially disease awareness and management program. The program provides an at home cholesterol/blood sugar test kit, ongoing software support, two hpone sessions with a health counselor, 24/7 nurse hotline and a personalized prevention plan. Here's the link to more information and how to sign up:  http://www.samsclub.com/sams/shop/product.jsp?productId=prod2400693  

Other resources to check:

CNN.com No Insurance? Get Help:  http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/02/12/ep.health.insurance.help/index.html

ADA TogetherRX

The Together RX Access Card helps with prescription assistance to over 300 brand name drugs available.  http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/treatment-and-care/health-insurance-options/together-rx.html

Walmart and $4.00 prescriptions:

Walmart has a prescription savings program where some meds are just $4.00! Here is the link to Walmart information.

NIH has a list of places to look for financial assistance for diabetes care:

http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/financialhelp/

Wheretofindcare.com is a resource to compare and rate diabetes education centers. Just pick your state and click.

Also check out Islets of Hope, which also runs ipump.org. Great resources list for financial assistance programs for diabetes!  http://www.isletsofhope.com/diabetes/insurance/medications_supplies_1.html