For at least the last decade, I can recall the same test strip options being available: Freestyle, Freestyle Lite, Accucheck, OneTouch, and Precision.
Do these brands come up with new, more precise technology? No doubt. They do. Are the most up-to-date options, with the most accuracy and painless application, ever covered by my insurance? Never. Take for example the IBGStar testing machine, Sanofi’s development for the iPhone. This is real cool but not cool enough to pay $1.50 per strip.
What are we left with then? The same old options depending on insurance (Freestyle lite, OneTouch Ultra, and Bayer Contour). I’ve been content with that pattern, overlooking the pretty machines in favor of the cheap. Now, those old options aren’t so cheap. Since switching onto the BlueCrossBlueShield’s plan through HealthCare.gov, each of those above options are available at $.50/strip. When you test your blood sugar over 200 times per month, that’s pricey. There had to be another way.
Insert Relion Prime, Walmart’s dirt cheap testing system. For $9, you get 50 strips. What’s the catch? Your blood sugar readings have some flexibility. Online reviews cite a 30 mg/dL either way difference–making it the equivalent of a slightly more sophisticated urine strip. In contrast, my Relion experience has been fairly accurate. When I think I’m low, I’m low. When I feel good, it’s good. No complaints really.
Has anyone else gone Relion? We’d love to hear about your experiences too! Drop us a comment below.