Diabetes Forecast

4 Ways to Save on Test Strips

Buyer Beware: Cut-Rate Test Strips for Sale

Here are four tips to keep the price of test strips down.

1. Use prescription assistance programs.

Many pharmaceutical companies have free programs that help low-income, uninsured people afford their diabetes supplies (your doctor typically needs to provide documentation for the application process). Call your strip maker to see if it offers such a program. The Partnership for Prescription Assistance (pparx.org or 1-888-477-2669) lists such programs, and the Together Rx Access Card (togetherrxaccess.com or 1-800-250-2839) offers savings on prescriptions for the uninsured. A company should not ask you to pay a fee to be connected to prescription assistance.

2. Shop for a meter based on the price of its strips.

Test-strip prices vary significantly depending on the brand of meter, so investigate strip prices at your preferred retailer to see which brands are inexpensive and then get the corresponding meter, if it suits your needs. If you have insurance, however, your plan may cover only certain brands.

3. Talk to your doctor.

Your health care provider may be able to give you test-strip samples or provide documentation for a prescription assistance program to help you get the supplies you need.

4. Check with your insurer.

If you have a flexible spending account (FSA) or health reimbursement account (HRA), ask your insurer if you can purchase diabetes test strips using that account. This way, you can buy your strips with pretax dollars.



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