Spend Next to Nothing on Your Diabetes Care

Check out these resources for free or reduced-cost supplies and meds to take charge of your diabetes without depleting your nest egg.

Jean Weiss
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If paying for your diabetes care seems to be blowing a hole in your budget, it’s not surprising: Medical expenses for people with diabetes are more than twice the amount that people without diabetes spend, according to the American Diabetes Association—in fact the average annual medical costs may total more than $11,000! To the rescue: This roundup of resources that may help cover some of the cost of your care.

Save on: Medicine, lab supplies, imaging services, food
Resource: Diabetescare.net coupon savings center diabetescare.net/coupons
This site is an advertising-free resource on the Internet that has a new coupon saving center. At the center you have direct access to a free RxCut Plus Card that offers 75% off prescription medications and up to 50% off lab and imaging services. The card can be used at thousands of pharmacies across the U.S. and also at major chains such as Target, Costco, Kmart and Kroger. You can also print out coupons for discounts on diabetes-related prescription medications, laboratory and imaging services, and even everyday grocery items.

Save on: Medical supplies
Resource: Health Resources and Services Administration hrsa.gov/leap
This organization, which is run by the Department of Health and Human Services, offers a free nylon filament that you can use to check your feet for nerve damage. The filament is similar to a bristle on a brush, and it can help you detect lost sensation in your feet, a precursor to problems that could lead to amputation. Instructions are included. You pay for shipping.

Save on: Prescription medications
Resource: The Medicine Program themedicineprogram.com
Find out what free prescription meds may be available to you through this no-cost volunteer patient advocacy organization. The group helps you sift through and enroll in the prescription medication patient-assistance programs, plus works with you, your doctor, and the drug manufacturers to get you free medicine.

Save on: Medications
Resource: Partnership for Prescription Assistance pparx.org
If you qualify, you may be able to get diabetes-related medicines for free or for a reduced cost through the Partnership for Prescription Assistance. This resource connects you with both public and private programs that you may not be aware of and that fit your needs. This is primarily for patients who don’t currently have prescription coverage. 

September 2012