Skipping Drugs She Can’t Afford

November 9, 2019 0 By Jose Scott


I’m Saundra DeAnne Johnson and I was dually diagnosed with congestive heart failure and type two diabetes, but I’ve been very lucky. I’ve been able to get treatment and live with it. (humming) (medical apparatus clicking) I’m on two different kinds of insulin and I’m on a non-insulin medicine for my diabetes. … (whispering) four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten. I’m on eight different medicines for my heart and related things. Over the course of the time that I’ve been taking them, the prices just have become prohibitive. Okay. It’s only us folks in that middle ground. We’re too rich to be poor. We’re too poor to, you know, be okay. We fall through the cracks. (man)- Saundra? Yeah! It’s like a full time job. Your job becomes managing your health. (woman)- Hi, I’m doctor Stroud. I work with Doctor Fish. Okay. (woman) And I understand in the past you’ve had some struggles with, kind of, insurance… Yes, so… But you haven’t been on the Victoza for how long now? (sighs) For…. a couple months maybe. Okay. Test strips are expensive. The lancets are expensive. (man)- Yeah. Yes. I prioritize the heart stuff over the insulin because (blood pressure cuff inflating) the heart stuff is more immediate. I know over time, diabetes will kill me, but it’ll take a longer time and I know that without the heart failure drugs, I only have 13 percent function of my heart. I don’t want to play with that. Okay Once you’re nice and clear… Yeah? I don’t like the stress of thinking about how I’m going to pay for my meds. You know, how’s it gonna… ’cause I’m never gonna have any more money or any less money, so I’m never gonna qualify for extra help. This one will have the syringes. Alright, thank you. (woman)- Have a good day! Mhm! I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place and I’m sure a lot of other people are as well.