Bridging possible supply gap while changing insurance/states?

Hi guys! You all are so wonderful and helpful here. I was wondering if you had any thoughts or experience on trying to have enough CGM and pump supplies while switching insurances and moving states.

Mid-January we need to move (from Virginia to NYC) for my husband’s work. His work doesn’t technically start until Feb. 1st, at which point I’m hoping that whatever health insurance we choose from his work will have kicked in. I’m worried about the possibility of running out of my 6-year-old daughter’s T:Slim and Dexcom G6 supplies while switching from our Virginia insurance to whatever comes next. I know it wouldn’t be the end of the world but she is doing SOO much better on these.

I’m already working on getting a virtual appointment set up with a new endo up there the very first week of February so I can request getting whatever prior auth and prescription needs to be sent in. For Virginia it took almost a month of annoying the crap out of Medicaid to get them approved, and they won’t allow for any extra supplies whatsoever, just the monthly usual amount.

Sorry that’s a lot of info, any thoughts on this? I’d definitely appreciate any ideas.

I have occasionally purchased supplies on eBay. To be frank I don’t believe they are supposed to be sold there, and the transaction might get canceled in process, but you might get lucky, and let’s face it - sometimes you have to do what you have to do. Of course I always check expiration dates and check the package photos carefully to make sure there doesn’t seem to be any tampering.
I drag out my Dexcom sensor supply by occasionally using a Freestyle Libre (I’m doing it right now, in fact). You probably know it does not have the bells and whistles of a G6, so you’ll want to get up to swipe the sensor overnight and will need to do manual glucose corrections. I understand this may be unappealing to you as a parent used to today’s great technology. I was diagnosed when we tested our urine for sugar (yes, you read that right😳) - plain old home BG meters didn’t come out until my late college years, and simple CGMS a while after that. So I’m used to various levels of “manual care” that you may not be. However it’s doable and I find it good to get some practice now and then.
Ask your doctor if it would be okay for her to wear her infusion set for an additional day. I believe 3 is recommended (as I understand it, it’s to prevent scar tissue) so see if she could go for 4 for a little while. I’m not a medical professional but I imagine scar tissue should not be a big concern for someone so young, especially for a short term. That could save you 3 sets over the course of a month, and once you’re settled with your new plan you could go back to the original schedule.
Wishing you all the best in your move and getting settled. Congratulations!

Hi @AngGottberg. I don’t know how helpful this is but he should be able to continue current insurance with cobra until the new one starts. Good luck :four_leaf_clover: on the move and new start!

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Couple of thoughts, in addition to what’s already been suggested:

  1. You could ask your local (here and there) Dexcom and Tandem reps if they have any free samples to tide you over. They might. Or endo’s offices sometimes have some. It doesn’t hurt to ask.

  2. Also worth checking if you can get a script for Omnipods now (maybe to go with those Freestyle Libres). It doesn’t make sense to me, but for some reason, Omnipod is often filled through pharmacy, while Tandem is filled through durable medical equipment — and that meant we could get both simultaneously. Maybe you could, too.

  3. We donate supplies we don’t need to a local free clinic; maybe there’s a free clinic near you either here or there that has some on hand. That’s hit-or-miss (regulations about prescriptions that may or may not apply, and may or may not be observed by different clinics, or by different people at the same clinic), but maybe worth making some phone calls.

  4. Don’t be shy about calling Dexcom and Tandem to report any parts that failed early. They’re both really good about sending replacements, and sometimes we’ve gotten replacements that actually outnumbered the items that failed, simply because that’s how they’re packaged. But even just with straight one-for-one, if you got any time on the one before it failed on you, a replacement will stretch you that much farther.

  5. And at least with Tandem, if you need to try a different infusion set (different cannula material, angle, or method of insertion) or different tubing length, they’ll send you some free samples to try.

I’m sure it goes without saying, but please do NOT lie about anything — if the companies feel like they’re getting played, they’ll stop being so generous about replacements and samples, and that would wreck it for everyone — but certainly do take them up on their offers to replace anything that failed early, and to try different infusion sets if in good faith you think you might get better results from different materials, angles, tube-lengths, or insertion devices (make sure to ask for accompanying cartridges — if the sites went bad early and you swapped everything out to be safe, you’re down those, too, plus you need replacement insulin, which they’ll also reimburse you for).

  1. If it comes down to it, post here again, and you might find someone who has spares of what you need for your daughter to get through.

Hang in there!

Cobra was very helpful whenever I changed jobs. I was too insecure to try going without insurance for any amount of time.