Saving hundreds on life-preserving medications

Almost lost her life trying to provide for her family

In June 2013, Tracy faced a critical financial hardship. Tracy’s place of employment had just downsized and Tracy was forced to make a difficult decision. Tracy had to decide to either take a pay cut and lose health coverage or find herself unemployed. From being employed full time for over 10 years, to part time with no health coverage was critical and Tracy was unsure what to do. With such a high demand for medication, along with being the sole breadwinner of the family, Tracy had felt she had nowhere to turn.

Tracy, who suffers from Type 1 diabetes and high blood pressure, would pay $248.00 a month just on insulin, plus over $100 dollars on test strips. Tracy shared that she eventually depleted all of her savings just to remain healthy. Tracy was also concerned about keeping a roof over her family’s head and food on their table. Finally Tracy had to make a really hard decision—she shared that sometimes her family did not know, but that there were some days, sometimes even weeks, that she would go without her medicine.

Due to lack of health coverage, Tracy almost lost her life. Tracy began to complain of tingling and numbness in the lip and tongue. A close friend of Tracy’s immediately took Tracy to seek medical attention and Tracy became hospitalized for a week.

While in the hospital, Tracy decided to call 2-1-1 Lake County. Tracy remembers that she had called 2-1-1 in the past for help with emergency food assistance and she felt they may help again with health services, and the hotline helped once more

The 2-1-1 Lake County operator referred Tracy to Lifeline’s various health services programs, which included prescription assistance, diabetic assistance, eye care assistance and nutrition education classes. At Lifeline Tracy was able to receive emergency prescription assistance, as well as diabetic testing supplies. With the wide-ranging health services programs offered at Lifeline, our staff was able to provided long term care as well, through the patient assistance programs offered by the pharmaceutical companies. The Lifeline Health Services Coordinator provided Tracy with additional assistance in completing the applications for assistance. We were able to assist Tracy in finding a pharmaceutical company that would provide medications for free. Within a matter of weeks Tracy received the news that she could start receiving the insulin along with blood pressure medication free of charge for a full year.

Tracy also understood that being a diabetic, it is very important to receive eye exams once a year, and maintain a healthy diet. According to the Diabetic Association, people on standard diabetes treatment may receive retinopathy four times as often as people who keep their blood sugar close to normal. With the help of several of Lifeline’s other health programs, Tracy was able to receive an eye exam and eye glasses, along with participating in nutrition classes that provided two $5.00 coupons for fresh produce for Tracy’s family.

With the help of Lifeline’s Health Services Tracy began a life-changing journey to greater health and happiness. Tracy credits Lifeline, Inc. for providing support and the resources needed to resume her active life.