the cost of insulin pumps

By angelalock Latest Reply 2010-08-16 11:55:49 -0500
Started 2010-08-14 11:12:17 -0500

i have been trying to get my insurance to pay for an insulin pump, but, unfortunately (yet predictably) have been denied. i have gone over the pros and cons of using the pump and, for me, the pros far outweigh the cons. first and foremost because i'm bad about forgetting to take each shot throughout the day. the problem is, with all the information i have found on the pump, i cannot seem to find out just how much one costs and if the insulin is more expensive. i am in a coverage gap as far as my prescription coverage goes and will have to be paying full price for the insulin. i am on a limited income and having many health issues that require medications i cannot afford to pay anymore than i am presently (about $650/month for insulin alone). can anyone tell me how much their pump cost and the average cost of the insulin each month?

9 replies

Harlen 2010-08-15 09:16:28 -0500 Report

I love my pump and it has made my life a lot better.
costs they run up to 7,000 with out ins ,there are places you can get a used one. The oens costs me a lot more then the vile of insulin,but you have the insets to get and they are 13.00 every three days at best if your laying out of pocket.If you do get a pump lit me know and I will send you a link to some frends that can help you get the insets at a much lower cost.
Best wishes
With my ins I only pay 10.00 a 1/4 for 22 viles of insulin befor I was spendin 400.00 a 1/4

angelalock 2010-08-16 11:26:24 -0500 Report

thanks, harlen. i guess i'll be looking into trying to find a used pump. there is no way i can afford a new one. the cost staggered me!!! right now, i'm taking shots (4 daily). i was on novolog and lantus and it was costing me about $650 a month. which meant i was forced to skip some shots because i could not afford it…i take several other meds, and all together my monthly cash price is more than $1500. the doc decided to see if novolin n and novolin r will work, because it is about $180 a month. a big difference!

kdroberts 2010-08-14 11:51:33 -0500 Report

Your insulin costs probably wont change since you will still be using the same amount for meals. It's possible you will need more if you are using the pumps basal feature which releases small amounts of insulin throughout the day in the background and you currently don't use a longer acting insulin. Depending on the pump and insurance the cost will vary. If you have a system like the omnipod the startup costs are lower but the monthly running costs are higher. Traditional systems have a lower monthly cost but as said, cost a lot up front. They are also not for everyone. If you don't feel comfortable programming a DVR, iPod or other such device then you may struggle with a pump. Lots of people overcome this but there are still a lot who just find pumps too frustrating and complicated to use. They also require a bigger time investment than shots both in terms of education and operating time.

What type of insulin and how much of it do you use?

angelalock 2010-08-14 12:32:33 -0500 Report

thanks for responding, kdroberts!!! my doc just recently switched me to both novilin r and novilin n. they do not seem to be working quite as well as the novolog and lantus i was taking before, so i'm thinking we're going to have to switch back. which will be a problem as, currently, i am paying 100% for all my scripts.

monkeymama 2010-08-14 11:37:29 -0500 Report

Hello there! The price of how much the insulin pump is based on the individuals insurance company. Now, depending on your insurance company, there may also be only certain insulin pumps they will cover as well. I would look into "why" your insurance company won't cover one. The insulin pumps can run over $6,000.00 base price without supplies. It just depends on which one you chose. The supplies each month can run an average of about $345.00 give/take on this amount. The price for the insulin for the pump will also depend on which insulin that is chosen to use in the pump. I am not trying to discourage you with the pump; believe me. I have written term papers about insulin pump usuage… I am a very avid supporter and user of an insulin pump myself. Let me know if there is anything I can help guide you with in this process. I went through the process and know some of the ins and outs with insurance based on what I learned going through the process. Believe me when I say, my insurance company can also be a BIG apin in my butt too. Drop me a line if you want to talk more. Hugs and I hope I was able to shed a little light for you.

angelalock 2010-08-14 12:40:24 -0500 Report

thanks for all the info, monkeymama!! $6000!!! wow!!! my insurance won't help pay for the pump because my c-pap numbers weren't low enough. i mentioned i forget to take all the shots i am supposed to take daily. especially the shot right before bedtime. i don't eat regularly like i should and that seems to be when i forget a shot. but i can hardly believe how much the pump costs!!! that is just ridiculous. and the cost of insulin is ridiculous, also. is it a wonder that so many people are forced to take far less medication than prescribed just so it will last the month? when i was taking novolog and lantus i was forced to do the same thing, that's why we switched meds.

monkeymama 2010-08-14 13:31:07 -0500 Report

Believe me, I was very thankful and surprised when my insurance company paid for it with no hassles. Here is an idea I am hoping might help you out. Have you tried using a small alarm to help you with remembering to eat/insulin? This has halped my dad (in his case he has issues with remembering because of brain trauma from 2 brain surgeries but is doing better). For as busy as I am, I also make sure I keep either a protein bar/protein shake with me; for on the go. With my other medication I am on, I have little to no appetite at times. My doctor tells me, as long as I try to eat three small and balanced meals; he'll be happy. I can understand the whole insurance coverage issues though; with my kids and me. There are still some things that our insurance company fights us on. I'm still responsible for the maintenance costs (cartridge caps and battery caps) and my skin prep for my pump. Along with my supplements I need (and my kids with their disease) that is not easy. Income and finances are hard here as well. So I can fully understand the stressed and aggravation with the medical. I am using the Novolog in my pump right now ans used to use Novolin and Lantus while I was on injections waiting for my pump. I can only pray and hope you can figure this out. The insulin pump companies base the price on individual insurance and how it is set up with them. That is why you may no find a price unless you talk to these pump companies directly. I am wanting to go on a CGM and my insurance is being a pain and will not allow it for right now. Even though I know I can ultimately nip this. I looked into the costs and WOW! If you even need to talk, just drop me a message. Hugs!

angelalock 2010-08-16 11:31:49 -0500 Report

i really appreciate that you've offered to be a shoulder to lean on. i've found here that everyone is very friendly and quick to offer help, whether it be info or emotional support. i think i'll call my doc and see if he can give me the name and number or site for a few different companies. and another friend mentioned people can buy used ones. that would probably be the route i'd have to take.

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