Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

recession has affected my meds

terror8396tterror8396 Posts: 1,832
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:47 AM in Chronic Pain
well it finally happened. i am wprking, but my wife has been out of work for a iittle over a year now. to save money, i have had to reduce my dose of fenatyl lollipops. 700 mirograms cost me 300. now i am going to go to 500 micrograms to save myself 25% or so. hopefully, i will save about 50-60 dollars a month. unfortunately, i don't know how my pain will work out. dr says about a 20% reduction in strength of meds. oh well, if it doesn't work, i will go back to 700 micrograms. oxycontin is compounded so 45 millagrams will cost about 70-75 dollars. i will keep this strength. they use weird doses when compounding meds. i recommend compound meds if there is a pharmacy around that does it. it is cheaper.
I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.


  • Jon,
    I can totally sympathize with you. My husband is disabled with a bad heart and never in a million years did I think I would be injured to the point of being in a wheelchair and permanently disabled. I was at my job for 30 yrs and was the VP. The CEO failed to file the correct forms for WC so now there is a legal battle there. Luckily both my husband and myself were granted SSDI exactly 8 weeks after filing. However, our yearly medical expenses exceed 20,000. Also once you are granted SSDI you must wait 24 months to get medicare which does not cover everything so you have to purchase another ins coverage also. My husband and I are both in the donut hole this is where medicare pays nothing until you pay 4500. out of pocket for your meds. So we now have to pay 9000. then it will go to 5% of the meds. One of my meds is 450.00 a month. My husband is on 19 meds per day which are all brand name due to his chronic heart condition and diabetes. I just don't know how we are going to make it. We have already lost our home. What does a person do when times are so difficult. I guess we decide whether to buy food or meds next. And of course together we make just enough to not qualify for anything to help us.
    My heart goes out to you as I know what you are going through. Just because we are disabled don't we still deserve some quality of life? I am trying to have a positive outlook every day but it is very hard not to get depressed. I pray that things will turn around for you Jon and anyone else who are faced with the same challenges this recession has put us in.
  • i am not an emotional person, but everyday my wife puts out resmes and gets no interviews. she has a thiing about employment agencies i try to get her to register but when she does no one calls. i called once and they told me one has to keep them appraised if you are working or not. my wife won't call in. many arguments about this.hopefully economy will turn around, it is hard to believe that it will tank for 2 or more years. things get so bad, i tried to get work with sales eventhough i teach. 2 interviews, but i guess they want a young guy.
    good luck
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • so sorry to hear what you are going through. Can I ask how you ended up in wheelchair? Did you have long term disability insurance with you job? I have it but i am considering getting supplemental because I am terrified I may end not being able to work after getting my soon to be scheduled fusion.

    Have you tried calling the pharma companies that supply your products? Most have programs for people who can not afford their medicines.

  • Are you teaching full time?

  • I don't envy you guys.
    I live in the UK and often complain about how crap it is here but I am so lucky really.
    We have the NHS(National Health Service) here which is financed by the Government through our taxes so I don't have to pay a penny(dime) for my meds and surgery etc.
    I honestly don't know what I'd do in your situation so I wish you well and don't envy you.
  • Hi Jon

    You should talk to your doctor. Sometimes the drug company reps can do something to help. Or call the company directly. These days you see commercials all the time saying "if you can't afford your meds". I'm also confused about your co-pay. Usually they are fixed with a max. Like mine can be $10, 15, 20 or max 25 depending on the medication. Teachers usually have very good insurance so I'm surprised it makes that much of a difference.

    As far as you wife finding a job -- well many people can't find a job or the job they want. Is she still receiving unemployment? Today alot have lost benefits because they aren't accepting jobs because they are less than they used to have.

    Sounds like you have some issues between you. Is there anyone, friend or family, who might be able to give some advice? Or is counceling a possibility? Between your health issues and her job loss there must be alot of tension. I remember when my husband was out on disability we were both so angry and frustrated. We almost sold everything and moved out of state, but then realized it was the wrong time to make a decision like that.

    Does your job offer an EAP service? That might be the best and free way to get some help.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    Talking with your doctor and with the drug company (not so much the pharmacist) you may be able to work out a easier payment plan and/or reduced costs.

    I know its something that most of us dont want to face, but when things get tighter, we all need to look for some type of help

    I know several instances where the above did work out and made it somewhat easier on the patient
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • I am so sorry! Last year, when we were in process of filing bankruptcy and losing everything, our house, every last dime we had, insurance, everything...anyway, It was so easy to get all my meds for free, FREE!! There is some program and I can't remember the name, but if you hsve no insurance and have low income, and your doctor will fill out the paper work for you, you may have to pay a shipping charge, a couple may have copays....but I had all my meds taken care of for a year that we didn't have insurance...and it included kadian I was on for pain, and ativan for anxiety,..they all came in the mail and everything except the kadian which had to be done each month, the others I got 3 months worth at a time. It saved our lives, litterally! My doctor told me about it and was willing to help fill out all the paper work and write all the scripts. I hope things get better for you
  • i have my drugs compounded through my pharmacy. they make them on site. i don't deal with drug companies. ive asked my pharmacy but no dice. my pain dr says we get screwed the narcotics are priced out of the park because they can and do so. with insurance, fenatyl lollipops, 7 mics cost 3 hundred, 500 mics 250. compounded oxy is the same as generic oxy by the companies. since i deal with pharmacy directly, i am not too optimistic about pricing.generic fenatyl lollipops are about 500 dollars. i used to have insurance where i had to pay first then get reimbursed. lollipops and fenatyl patches cost about 3 thousand. yes i still teach. i have to to keep family on insurance and too expensive to retire now until wife gets a job, has been a little over a year, she is an accounts payable in san francisco bay area. at least even with pricing i have excellent insurance fo rht emost part. after a certain amount it pays 100%.
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • I also felt the crunch with the loli-pops. I don't remember the price, but my insurance company quit paying for them (although they DO pay for the patch)

    I ended up going with Hydromorphone rather then Fentynal, and it seems to be doing the trick somewhat. I also have a clearer head then I did with the suckers.
  • I am just so interested in those fent. pops! I've never heard of them at all...I need to look into those and maybe ask my doctor and my pharmacy (they are a compounding)...that's quite a big dose for breakthru, isn't it?
  • it ids micrograms not milligrams. the brand name is atiq suckers. very expensive that is why i get mine compounded. they are supposed to be for cacer patients but my insurance has never given me a problem. they also taste good, cherry or strawberry flavor. the atiq suckers re weird. they kind of crumble while mine are candy smooth. they take about 15-20 minutes to finish. remember micrograms while most drugs are milligrams. big difference in strength, micro are so small that they get absorbed through mouth cells.
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • Every state is different so what is available in one state may not be available in others. First and foremost, talk to your doctor and explain the problem paying for the meds. Some doctors can/will suppliment with samples, sometimes a full months' worth. In NYS, there is EPIC for seniors, there are Medicaid programs available not only for low income, but also a new programs for those that are considered disabled but working and need medicine. Unfortunately there does not seem to be one place to look for information that could help. Several states have or had prescription assistance or discount programs... some may have left them unfunded after medicare d came out, some are still "live" but you have to search for them.

    I'm not sure if it is okay to post the addresses, if not, I'll take them out. I do not know of these programs personally but they do seem to be a place to start for those either without prescription coverage or with limited coverage.

    www.rxassist.org lists contacts for the various pharma companies that have patient assistance programs, it also lists some clinics and state programs that might be able to help those without coverage at all.

    www.pparx.org is another that can help-mostly those without any coverage (it sounds like) but they also have faqs about various ways to get help.

    www.needymeds.org - comprehensive directory of available patient-assistance programs (including which programs offer which drugs)

    www.copays.org - The Patient Advocate Foundation’s Co-Pay Relief Program. If you have insurance but are still struggling with high costs for medication, this program gives financial aid to patients who meet certain income qualifications and who are being treated for chronic conditions such as cancer, certain autoimmune disorders, and secondary issues resulting from chemotherapy.

    Visiting the pharmacuetical company websites that produce your medication can help as well... for some doctors they'd be more than willing to help if you complete the paperwork and give it to them to approve/sign. Remember to include a stamped envelope if they are mailing it for you or back to you.

    Unfortunately, until medical type assistance is available to all, the only people that seem to have little to no issue in this country are those too poor to afford it, too rich to care or lucky enough to have insurance that actually covers all their prescriptions.

    I hope something here might help someone running into problems.
This discussion has been closed.
Sign In or Register to comment.