Diabetes Self-Management Articles

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Insulin Pumps
Not Just for Type 1

by Jan Chait

If the monthly cost of supplies has you gasping, consider it in relation to the cost of oral diabetes therapy. Taking a sulfonylurea such as glipizide (Glucotrol) may cost about $32 per month, and the maximum dose of metformin can run up to $55 per month. A month’s worth of pioglitazone (Actos) at the maximum dose will set you back up to $125. Even paying only insurance copayments rather than full price can get expensive because people rarely take only one oral diabetes medicine. Adding up the costs of your drug therapy can help you make an informed, cost-effective choice between oral therapy and an insulin pump.

Check your insurance policy. If it does not specifically prohibit insulin pumps, it should cover one for you. You may have to argue your case, so be sure to keep careful records of your conversations with the insurance company, recording the people you talked to, when you called, and what you were told. This is also where the pump company of your choice will come in handy. Pump companies are very adept at negotiating with insurance companies for coverage.

A pump for you?
If you are motivated and willing to take on some additional responsibility for your diabetes care, an insulin pump could be a useful option for you. Its power and flexibility could help you to achieve tighter blood glucose control. To learn more about pumps, click here.

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