Wednesday, October 14, 2015

This Is Why Type 1's Are Cynical

I have not made it a secret that numerous Type 1 diabetics are cynical about this disease ever being cured and skeptical when they hear about the latest "cure." The skepticism is
largely due to the part that after a small story leaks out about the "cure," it is never heard about again. And we are left wondering what happened.
   It looks like that is changing, as certain cures in the works are consistently talked about in the Type 1 community and because the 21st Century Cures Act (passed by the House, yet to be acted upon by the Senate) would get cures to us more quickly. However, because it is has been the norm for so long for the "cures" to disappear, many Type 1 diabetics are stuck in the skeptical frame of mind.
   Also, when you look at the cost of this disease - boy howdy! Talk about a money maker! We live in a country where nothing matters more than the bottom line. I sat down and did the math for what it costs for me to live (or what the companies make off of me). Here is what I came up with:
Monthly costs:
Toujeo - $450 for one carton of three pens
Novolog - $540 for one carton of five pens
Relion test strips - $36 for one box of 100
Total: $1,026 monthly

Non-monthly (but at least annual) costs:
Ketostix - $15 for a bottle of 50
Glucose tablets - $9 for a 6 ounce bottle
Insulin pen needles - $30 for a box of 100
Lancets - $12 for a box of 100
Total: $66 (depending on how often they are needed or changed)

Cost every other year:
Relion glucometer - $15
Total: $15

   So, let's say that I have to get a new meter (because meters tend to be retired and you have to buy a new one because the company no longer makes strips for your old meter) and I spend the $66 twice a year (modest estimate). I spend $12,459 in that year just for supplies. That does not include lab tests or doctor visits.
   There is an estimated one million Americans with Type 1 diabetes and 371 million worldwide. Let's say that 371 million spent the same amount I did - the total generated just for Type 1 diabetic supplies in that one year worldwide is . . . drumroll . . . $4,622,289,000,000. Translation: $4.6 trillion dollars! That's a LOT of bank!
   This is why there is cynicism.

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