Help! My Insurance Company is Trying to Kill Me!

03/13/2013 12:45 PM |

Strung out on insulin

  • Strung out on insulin

I woke up with a start last night at 2:30, and my first thought was, “did I set an alarm to be up at 2:30?” Such are the insane ideas a brain starved of sugary blood will have. Of course you didn’t, I assured myself. You’re a diabetic whose blood sugar is low. You need to go eat something. So there’s me, standing in my kitchen at three o’clock in the morning, eating Skittles like a jerk.

I would have checked my blood sugar to see what low number it actually was except I can’t—I’m out of testing equipment, because my health insurance company arbitrarily decided to stop covering the supplies I was using. Oh, they also tried to stop covering my insulin.

I take shots of insulin several times a day, every day, in order to live. Without insulin, I would die. So imagine my dismay last week when I went into the pharmacy and the lady behind the counter, who has been dispensing the same medicine to me for over a year, told me my insurance company no longer covered any of my medicine.

Of course, that’s not an issue for the pharmacy—that’s an issue for the insurance company! Let’s take a moment to note here that in New York State, there’s a law requiring insurance companies to cover diabetics; the disease can’t be considered a pre-existing condition used to deny coverage.

So I called the insurance company and said, “hey I went to the same pharmacy I always go to to get the same medicine I always get and they said now I can’t have it.” And every inarticulate customer service representative I spoke to had no idea what I was talking about; one fought with me for almost an hour about whether the vials are 10 mL or 100. “I’m looking at it right now—it says 10.” (She later told me, with pride, that I was wrong. I’m not wrong. They’re fucking 10 mL.)

More than one explained to me that my account said this: “New York state law mandates you be covered for diabetes supplies… excluding diabetes supplies.” I’m not joking. I was near tears. I need this shit to live. How do you argue with insane people? It’s like telling the police you have a right to do what you’re doing as they put you in handcuffs and toss you in the back of the car.