Podcast 81: Pandemic Or Not – Emergency Insulin Resources | Big Pharma

This impromptu episode was created to hopefully set your mind at ease. As PWDs are flooded with stories on social media concerning the fear of an insulin shortage or the disruption of diabetes supplies, I felt compelled to act. Even though most companies have issued statements reassuring people living with diabetes that everything would be okay, I wanted to hear it for myself from the company leaders. Continue reading

My Hard-Knock Healthcare Wisdom (Tips on How to Navigate the Exchange)

health-insurance

It was about this time last year when I wrote, Battle To The Death.. My Death That Is, about the countless hours/days/weeks I spent dealing with insurance companies. I want to start by saying that I’m incredibly grateful to finally have medical insurance as someone who has been self-employed most of my adult life, but this recent round(s) of phone calls has me questioning a few things. Continue reading

Lantus Monopoly – Jab in the Pancreas

Lantus Monopoly I’ll do my best not to curse throughout this post as my mother recently mentioned I could use more appropriate language.  I am incredibly thankful for my medical insurance and for the first time had to call in my prescription for Lantus, an insulin I HAVE to take every single day.  In fact, my alarm goes off at 6:11am every morning to remind me to inject this precious drug.  I would not be alive without Lantus.  Here is where shit hits the fan.

  • 10 days ago I called in my prescription for Lantus
    • 2 hours later I receive a text – prescription is available to pick up and cost $150. I question this amount because Novolog costs $100.
  • Next Day – I have an argument with the pharmacy because they’re out of test strips AND insurance wouldn’t cover them.
    • Test strips = $298+
    • Please note my recent post, Halloween Highs & Lows, about having to test every 45 minutes during my high blood sugar scare.
  • Fast Forward 1 Week (10:08am)– Contact pharmacy again about Lantus. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Does Your Vote Count?

Your Vote Counts

As today is a very important election day, it made me think of how diabetes has swayed my vote at times.  Not really a conscious decision, but as an intelligent, self employed adult, I had to research the candidates and determine with all of the political bullshit, who actually cared about my well being and pursuit of happiness considering the obstacles I might face with this disease.

In October, 2012, Diabetes Mine published an article, The Politics of Diabetes in Election Season.  As I read the article, I scrolled down to the comment section and was shocked by an anonymous writer.  It spoke to me for a number of reasons.

The anonymous writer shared:  As a child, my father coached me from an early age that I could not be an artist, an entrepreneur, a small business owner… in short, he coached me I could NOT be ANYTHING I wanted to be.

The reason for this was simple. I was diabetic. And unless I worked for a big company, I would never be able to get coverage by myself. Continue reading

Walgreens Worked a Wonder

Insulin at the pharmacy

No, I have not been paid off. No, I am not in the pockets of big pharma. No, I do not purchase all prescriptions from Walgreens. Yet, my perspective on pharmacy refills took a turn for the grateful last week with the singular effort of one pharmacist.

In accordance with a common theme, I was looking to pickup a prescription right as I need it. Picking up a prescription early has never crossed my mind. Due to some insulin resistance from scar tissue (referenced here), I made the switch back to the pens (Lantus and Novolog). When I called Walgreens expecting it to be ready within the next hour, relayed to me was the news that each prescription would be costing $150 under my coverage (BCBS Oklahoma under HealthCare.gov). Continue reading

Top 5 Pump-free Powers

Rarely in my life have I opted to go back to shots. It’s usually a last resort. My membership card for Team Pump has never been in question. I love the on-the-fly corrections I can make based on symptom awareness. Nevertheless, my employer switched up insurance companies last month and due to a few logistical issues I was thwarted back into the land of Lantus for two weeks. It wasn’t all bad. Check out the top 5 pump-free powers I rediscovered:

1) No strategic sleeping

My favorite pump site location is on the upper, outside butt region (almost above the hips). Occasionally, these sites can get pretty sore, even after one day. Because I pay for my sites, I like to get my money’s worth and keep them in for at least 3 days. At night, sometimes I avoid sleeping on a certain side if things turn tender. Continue reading

The Middle Zone (70-90)

It haunts us. It’s almost indescribable but you know the feeling. Described as anxiety, lack of focus, restlessness, or the time when you act like a person you aren’t. It doesn’t happen when you’re blood sugar’s high. It doesn’t happen when you’re blood sugar’s low. It strikes when your blood sugar is in the twilight zone: 70-90.

We know the signs of being high – foggy eyes, agitation, thirst, etc. We know the signs of being low – nonsensical hunger, dizziness, fatigue, etc. In the twilight zone, it’s really hard to recognize any signs. It isn’t a physical sensation except for perhaps a faster heart rate. Particularly, it’s purely mental, the inability to control your thoughts. Allow a monk on a mountainside in Tibet thirty minutes in the middle zone and he’ll never be the same. Continue reading

SHOT #1

2nd

It was my first day home and my mom looks wicked stressed. It was time to take my first shot and I recall her shaking while drawing out the insulin. I sat on the steps in our dining room and she came in for the kill. I don’t remember freaking out because I knew what was going down, we had done this in the hospital a few times.

She began to sweat and I thought she might pass out. She splashed water on her face and came back. I took the needle from her and gave my first shot in my thigh. She was relieved and I am free, free from having to rely on anyone else. Continue reading