Life Without Health Insurance in the US

I am currently without health insurance.  Only three months, but it hasn’t quite gone as smoothly as I had hoped.  I take 6 prescriptions and 27get them all filled for 90 days by a mail-order service.  This isn’t my favorite way to get my meds, but it is significantly cheaper.  This service has a bad history of not getting my scripts filled in a timely manner.  That’s what happened this last time I used the service.  Three of my scripts are anti-depressants were ordered by my psychiatrist and came without a hitch.  Luckily.  I get two meds from my neurologist and these were submitted with plenty of time.  I’d get my 90 day supply and make it through to July when I start getting medicare.  No sweat, right?  Wrong!  Even though they had three weeks to fill them, only one arrived.  A week passed and the second, Lyrica was still not filled.  I got online and checked on it, and they said the pharmacist had a question and the doctor didn’t reply, and the request was cancelled!  Yay.  That’s the way to take care of people.  I got online, requested the script be re-requested.  At that time I also ordered a refill for my thyroid meds.  They said the doctor would be contacted.  I called to follow up, as nothing arrived and I was down to the last few days of my coverage.  In the end, neither the Lyrica (a pain med) or the thyroid med was filled.

logoIt’s been a week without Lyrica and I am feeling the lack quite significantly.  The right side of my head is on fire and it feels like I’ve got an icepick in my right eye.  If I pay cash for just 30 days of Lyrica at the local pharmacy, it costs $900, so I ordered some neurontin from Canada.  Cost me $150 for 120 tabs.  It will take far more of the neurontin to relieve the pain by 3:1.  The only bad thing is the neurontin has yet to arrive.  It may be another week before it comes.  Meanwhile I am working on controlling my pain with meditation.  I am able to take it from a 6 to a 3, which is manageable.  But if I hit a ten before I get control, it’s nearly impossible to bring the pain level down much.

I am not exactly sure what going without levothyroxine will do, especially stopping suddenly.  So I’ll just see if I can make the last 20 doses last me 5 weeks.

I looked into getting a 30 day supply of each from the manufacturer.  But  it would take longer to get that paplevothyroxine-sodiumerwork completed and involve a trip to two doctors in order to have a prescription written for them.  It’s just easier to live without for a short time.  I hope.

Lyrica is notorious for weight gain.  Taking it on top of a low functioning thyroid and going through menopause it’s a wonder I don’t weigh more than I do.  So I have to look at the positives–I have already lost 8 pounds and I only have 5 weeks before I am insured again.

I have always felt for those in the US without health care.  Not health insurance.  People don’t need insurance,  just health care.  This experience has made me even more sensitive to the lack of proper health care and easy access to medication.  I’m glad I quit taking the Copaxone injections.  Those run some $3500 per 30 day supply.  Outrageous.  These drug companies want our support, our tax money to do all their research, yet they don’t make the drugs accessible to everyone.  That’s just wrong on so many levels.

I hope to be down 20 pounds before July and I get back on the Lyrica.  At least something good will come of this experience.  Plus I know the Lyrica really works.


16 thoughts on “Life Without Health Insurance in the US

  1. I am so sorry for the consistent red tape you must go through… And it sure would depress me if I had no health insurance (which may be around the corner). And I agree on this cost/availability BS from the pharmaceuticals… And I hate more the vulture lawyers egging you on to sue because of a medicine’s effects… They are the last nail in this collapsing system. I hope things improve for you and quickly.

    1. I’ve only got a few weeks before my coverage starts in July and will be setting up appointments with new doctors for the first week in July to get all my meds filled. I feel a little better today and hopefully will be much better tomorrow.

      The big pharma and insurance are just two more of the corrupt systems in the US. And lawyers they make their living off of law suits are next on the list. Gotta blame Reagan for that one when he permitted lawyers to advertise on TV.

  2. It is reading stories like yours here makes me glad we here in the UK have National Health Service I have 7 meds and no way would I cope if I had to pay.. good luck…

  3. Amen!! And Amen, again. No long “sea story” from me, but god, do I empathize with you! As always, a powerful and well-written post.


    1. Thank goodness that I only have to deal with this for a few weeks. My son’s been without insurance for three years. Really tough. Sure makes you appreciate what you’ve got.

  4. Oh dear, what a struggle. I hope you can manage the pain and get your medicine soon. I do feel with the people who have no proper access to medical care as well.

  5. Oh Linda what a time you’re having… Our system in Canada is not perfect by any means but at least anyone can go to a doctor or hospital and get looked after… As far as prescriptions go ..until one is a 65 if they do not have insurance they need to pay out of pocket unless they have low income and then they can apply for help. I so hope things get straightened out for you…. At least your new home will brighten your spirits quite a bit…. but you need to be feeling well to enjoy it… Diane

    1. At least I am only temporarily without coverage. I will be setting up appointments with new doctors for the first weeks of July and get things straightened out. For now I am trying to struggle through. You know how that goes. How is your sleep lately?


  6. It is disgraceful that you must work so hard for such a simple thing: get the prescriptions your doctor believes you should have. I continue to be impressed at how you continue to find a bright side to look at, even while you’re struggling. Hugs to you, my friend.

    1. Thank you for your kind comments. It’s all we can do…just keep moving along knowing that nothing (good or bad) lasts forever. Lessons I’ve only learned over the past two years blogging.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s