One Test Strip a Week! Really?

By GabbyPA Latest Reply 2013-12-11 14:37:15 -0600
Started 2013-12-04 14:28:06 -0600

I was reading an article about the state of Oregon and their efforts to limit type 2's on Medicaid to one test strip a week. WHAT? That is just nuts. How can you know what is going on inside if that is all that's covered? Now, I am speaking as an uninsured person, and I pay for all of my test strips out of pocket. But I do make money. People on fixed incomes who cannot afford the extra are going to be hard hit if this takes affect. And if you have an A1c below 8 (that is not even a well managed number) they would not be allowed any strips under this consideration.

How can we be going so far backwards? This was shocking to me. How does your state do for offering you coverage of your testing supplies?

38 replies

2013-12-11 14:37:15 -0600 Report

I work at Home with Google. It's by-far the nicest job I have had. I've made $64,000 so far this year working online and I'm a full time student.
I've made such great money. It's really user friendly and I'm just so happy that I found out about it. Here is what I do,

GabbyPA 2013-12-10 18:13:32 -0600 Report

Here are the results as reported by DiaTribe.
Today at 5:26 PM

Dear Supporters,

Thank you for your incredible support for our petition urging Oregon to stop their proposal to severely restrict test strips for people with diabetes. We received almost 3,500 signatures and more than 1,000 testimonials over the course of a couple days – all thanks to you!

On December 5, Oregon’s Health Evidence Review Commission voted on a revised proposal on reduced access to test strips for people with type 2 diabetes. The new proposal will now provide 50 test strips to newly diagnosed type 2 patients, and then 50 strips for every 90 days if the patient starts using a diabetes medication. Although this is not optimal, it is much better than having no strips for people with an A1c under 8.0% and only one strip per week for those with an A1c over 8.0%. diaTribe’s Managing Editor, Nancy Liu, gave a testimonial on behalf of all patients, including the supporters who signed our petition. Please read our updated piece about the Oregon meeting for more details on the new proposal and some disturbing quotes we heard from members of the HERC. (

We’re so glad for the many diabetes advocates that made their voices heard and who helped prevent the worst-case scenario. The diaTribe Foundation hopes to continue work on these issues and to advocate on behalf of all people with diabetes. To stay updated, you can sign up for our mailing list at

Thank you again for your help and your advocacy!

Very best,
Kelly, Nancy, Adam, and the diaTribe team

Gess 2013-12-10 10:01:42 -0600 Report

i m allways cold and i cant get warm and my blood sugar is always runs low and im weak doing house hold choirs and i cant get it up and i cant get above 100 because my mother wants me to cut all the sugar out of my diet

mlshelton1 2013-12-09 16:54:45 -0600 Report

Wal-Mart has a tester for $15 and the strips are $9 for 50 strips…that has really helped me

mspiggy81 2013-12-09 21:33:35 -0600 Report

I'm definitely going to look into that, I have 3 different meters and the cheapest strips I can find for any of them are about $25 for a box of 25ct.

GabbyPA 2013-12-09 19:03:12 -0600 Report

That is what I use also. It saves my butt often. I don't care for Wally World, but they are a necessary evil sometimes.

DrGala 2013-12-08 13:28:46 -0600 Report

Thank you for sharing. Being from Oregon, I can say, we are in desperate need to make some drastic changes to our health care system. We are getting sicker and people need help, not bureaucracy.

Casarni1 2013-12-08 00:48:34 -0600 Report

I wasn't aware of this. My pay disqualifies me for any help, although I may need this coverage later. Being vocal in the right places now can insure that the coverage will be there for those in need now.

Copperchef 2013-12-07 12:30:49 -0600 Report

Gabby, I'm with you. But you have to consider the state too. They need to look at their own laws. I think the city of Yahmill, Oregon should sue the State for violating one of their laws. "It shall be against the law for any one to predict the future." Yep, it's on the books and should be exercised, they are trying to predict someone else's diabetic heath from 1 test strip a week.

GabbyPA 2013-12-08 11:21:04 -0600 Report

There are a lot of those old laws that should be cleared from the books. Maybe this is one of them? I know it is illegal to put an ice cream cone in your back pocket in one state and you cannot take your lion to the movie theater in another.
States do have to do what they can to make sure they stay afloat. I do agree with that. We are a society that is on the take, and it weighs a lot of states down. However, if you are going to offer the program, then it should be offered right.

Copperchef 2013-12-08 12:43:22 -0600 Report

Overall, politicians should stay away from medical decisions. When they try making uninformed or poorly informed decisions they generally make errors. Hopefully they will be led to enlightenment and change the ruling.

buffy360 2013-12-05 01:44:16 -0600 Report

This is so difficult. I'm on Medicaid unable to work, didn't have children and have no spouse. I barely have basics covered.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2013-12-04 21:03:24 -0600 Report

Gabby I read this an hour or so ago and I signed the pettition. I think it is a shame what HERC is doing. Who are they to tell people how often they need to test?

GabbyPA 2013-12-05 05:36:17 -0600 Report

I guess they are not telling them how often they need to test, just what they are willing to cover. The rest is on your own. However, if Medicaid is being used properly by those who really require that assistance, it's a shame they won't meet the needs of those people.

One Step at a Time
One Step at a Time 2013-12-04 16:44:36 -0600 Report

SAMs club has pretty good prices too.

I have insurance and pay nearly nothing out of pocket.

Not to get political, but doesn't Obamacare mandate insurance companies accept you regardless of preexisting conditions? Does that not help?

GabbyPA 2013-12-04 17:21:56 -0600 Report

Just because you can get insurance doesn't mean you can either afford it or that it will actually cover what you need. Besides, the deductibles it seems are just as if you paid out of pocket for most people anyway.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2013-12-04 20:58:32 -0600 Report

Gabby the last job I had, our deductable was $1500.00 dollars. Even with diabeties I didn't see a doctor enough in one year that I would ever have gotten to the point of not having to pay anything. Thankfully, my metformin is $6.00 for a 90 day supply at Wal-Mart.

GabbyPA 2013-12-05 05:38:23 -0600 Report

Mine is free at Publix, and for that I am grateful. Same here, my 2-4 visits a year don't come close. Only if I was in a catastrophic situation would it work out. That is what insurance should be for, but they don't see it that way anymore.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2013-12-09 17:28:33 -0600 Report

No they don't. I know someone on medicaid whose diabetes is a problem because of other medical problems. Her doctor wants her to test 3 times a day. Medicaid only allows her 30 test strips a month. She has to pay out of pocket to have enough strips to last a month.

mspiggy81 2013-12-04 17:10:33 -0600 Report

It's a double edged sword, yes the insurance. companies have to accept you, however the premiums are astronomical and well out of reasonable range for most people. In my case I make too little money to qualify for any Obama healthcare tax credits. This puts my insurance at nearly $800 per month for my husband and I. Obamacare says I should qualify for medicaid and not to sign up for Obamacare. Obamacare says all persons making near or below poverty level automatically qualify for medicaid, period. However many states, including mine, did not expand medicaid to match Obamacare standards. We are still being told unless you are 100% disabled, or have children in the home you do not qualify no matter how little income you make. So there are a lot of people being left in a loophole. As Obamacare rolls out, more and more low income resources are drying up. Free Clinics are loosing their fed. funding since the federal govt. says we should be getting medicaid and shouldn't be in need of the clinics anymore. Obamacare is going to turn into a healthcare nightmare.

One Step at a Time
One Step at a Time 2013-12-05 05:32:22 -0600 Report

I am not very familiar with the situation, exempt that my OB/GYN is retiring before he planned because he says he can't afford to take all the high risk patients who are now on insurance.

I think we will see more cuts before we will see state scathing up- it's just so expensive. I am glad there is assistance for those who need, but I think we can all agree it is those who abide the system and soak up the resources they don't really need that are causing the problems. Those who cannot work need to be taken care of, and those who can work need to find jobs and help themselves.

Thanks for the reply. I feel more educated and more opinionated.

I hope everyone can find ways to get their meds!

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2013-12-04 21:01:29 -0600 Report

Ms Piggy, I have no health insurance and can't get medicaid in my state because I am not disabled or have children. I can't afford the premiums for Obamacare but I don't oppose it. I certainly don't quailify for the healthcare tax credit.

The States have to catch up with medicaid for those of us who are not insured.

GabbyPA 2013-12-04 17:24:12 -0600 Report

This is scary. I also use a clinic where I am on a sliding scale. So I do pay, but nothing like a regular doctor would charge me. The care is not that great, but it is the only way to get prescriptions.

mspiggy81 2013-12-04 17:46:47 -0600 Report

My clinic is classified as a free clinic, however it's really more of a low-income clinic. I pay $40 per year flat fee to be registered there and they do their best to keep things to Walmarts $4 plan. They also have a voucher program through a local pharmacy where you can get other medicines at apprx 10% of cost. The care is not the best as they are very over booked and understaffed, but it's better than the alternative of regular ER bills or no healthcare at all.

GabbyPA 2013-12-05 05:40:16 -0600 Report

I agree. I have only been to the ER once and I felt so bad to use them. But I couldn't get into my doctor for about 2 months.

mspiggy81 2013-12-04 16:00:27 -0600 Report

As of this point Virginia has opted not to expand medicaid, and from the research I've done there is very little help for adult diabetics and nothing for pre-diabetics who want to get a good jump start on control and preventing full T2. I have a friend who is T1 and has gone nearly 8 months without her insulin. Despite two DKA episodes she is still being denied state coverage even though her job does not offer insurance of any sort and out of pocket premiums are more than half her monthly wages. I go to a free clinic and their charity care will pay for one box of 25 strips per month, but only if you are insulin dependent. It makes no sense to me why states do not push for more testing and tighter BG control, it keeps complications at bay and in the long run is cheaper on the state. A years worth of strips at 4x a day is still cheaper than a week in the ICU for DKA.

If you have a Kroger Pharmacy in your area they have very cheap meters ($10) and strips (Kroger branded) and several diabetes medicines (tabs only unfortunately) on their $4/month $10/90day generics list.

dagger1234 2013-12-04 14:45:59 -0600 Report

Luckilly, I live in Minnesota so every individual is entitled to having medicare or health insurance effective jan 1st, 2013. The gadget seems pretty bad ass to me if you ask me but yes, it will effect too many people. They just need to stick to cheap ones where people can afford and where health care providers can give them to low income people.

DulaxTrainer 2013-12-09 21:43:22 -0600 Report

I too live in Minnesota, and I'm very lucky that my insurance allows me to take care of my diabetic needs. I've been very fortunate as far as getting the supplies and meds I need to try and keep my BS / A1C under control.

GabbyPA 2013-12-04 15:01:46 -0600 Report

Yes, that helps. I use Relion brand and they are the least expensive I have found. My meter does what it needs. No bells and whistles, but as long as it gives me accurate readings, I'm okay with that.

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