Congratulations! You’ve just been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Welcome. You are going to learn SO MUCH stuff. And as a lovely parting gift from your doctor for allowing him to share this exciting news with you, here is you very own, brand new glucometer to test your blood sugars, complete with meter, 10 lancets and 10 free test strips. A “value” of over $100…now yours, absolutely FREE, just for playing “Hey, Why Am I Always So Darn Thirsty?”. Then the doctor disappears, nurse gives you your first little “prick” to show you how to “do it”, packs up all of your new stuff into a plastic bag and schedules a 3 month follow-up. Is that the way it happened for you? Yeah, same for most of us.
Anyway, now that you’re “diabetic”, strap yourself in for the learning curve (it looks like a roller coaster at Six Flags). You are about to get a crash course on everything related to being a Type 2 Diabetic from education classes with a “diabetes educator”, learn really important stuff about nutrition ( I STILL don’t get that whole “exchange” thing ), warning signs, explanations and examples of what happens when your blood sugars are too low or too high. You’ll get books, and manuals, infographics, phone numbers, different doctors or professionals to have on your “care team” Did you know you are even going to have a dentist and an eye doctor on it? Just who’s NOT going to be billing my insurance company?
So, I thought this was FREE?
The one thing you didn’t get with all of your “free” stuff ( actually paid for by your insurance company ), was a “price list”. “Why would I need a price list?” you might ask. Well because diabetes is big BUSINESS and there TRILLION$ of GLOBAL DOLLAR$ to be made by the same companies that either bill or pay for $425 for an aspirin while in hospital. You think that’s bad? You ain’t seen nothin’ yet. Wait until you need to go out of pocket for test strips. Be careful to not have a stroke – remember, as a diabetic, you ARE at risk!
Okay…Let Me Have It…I’m Ready Now For MORE Bad News…
Alright, let me prepare you for it first. You’ve kind of been in this spot before.
Remember when your “old” computer printer crapped out and you went to Wal-Mart to go buy a cheap one…and WOW, look at how cheap they ARE! Such a deal. You almost wanted to buy TWO they were so cheap (c’mon, they’re printers not big jars of peanut butter 2-for-1…oh wait I DO need peanut butter ). You were so happy and proud at all the money you saved. You hurried right home, plugged everything in, ran a test page – LOOKS GREAT – then got to work printing stuff out.
Then….it STOPPED! After only what seems like 10 pages, it ran out of ink. The kid at Wal-Mart didn’t know that the manufacturer only puts enough ink in the printer to get it home and get you excited. The reality now hits – you have to go get an ink cartridge – but hey, how expensive can an ink cartridge cost for a $30 printer? No problem, right?
“WAIT…There Must Be Some Sort Of Mistake!”
How can a BLACK ink cartridge cost almost as much as my printer? You tell the clerk at the office supply store ( or Wal-mart again ) “You need to check the price in you computer. It MUST be wrong!” After 10 minutes of “huh?”, you realize you have been “suckered”. But don’t feel too bad about it…it happens again when you get your new glucometer.
Remember in your new box for your meter, you received 10 lancets and 10 test strips? Well, think of the test strips as the ink cartridge ( and in this case, like the “teaser” ink cartridge that came with your new printer – starting to get that “old” feeling? ). The glucometer was actually FREE – whereas you stilled paid a little money for your printer. Now if your printer cost about $30 and ink cartridges cost about as much, then it makes sense that if my glucometer is FREE, then my test strips are going to be pretty close to free, too. Right? Oh, it is always so sad to tell a young child one day that there really is no Santa Claus. The answer, I’m afraid, is NO! Not Even CLOSE. It’s very likely that a box of 50 test strips is going to cost just about as much as your ink cartridge – but your ink cartridge is actually going to look pretty inexpensive when you compare it to your test strips. Watch this very carefully