Down the drain: $11,906 worth of insulin


This will break the hearts of pharmacists, HME providers and patients everywhere. The National Community Pharmacists Association put together a little something called Waste Not, Want Not. Pharmacies participating in the Dispose My Meds Program sent the NCPA photos of wasted mail order prescriptions. While many of them are of pills and such, it pained me to see, toward the end, pix of wasted diabetes supplies.

In one photo, a trash bag containing 84 vials of Lantus (one of the insulins I take). The same customer also disposed of 26 vials of Novolog. The dollar figure on this? $11,906. The insulin was auto-shipped from one of the big mail orders.

When I think of all the people who can't afford insulin, and how this could have helped them, I want to cry.

To add insult to injury: The patient wasn't all that compliant.

More wasted insulin: One customer, using insurance mandated mail order, notified the supplier that she needed her auto-ship insulin held until she returned from vacation. They shipped it anyway and it sat on her porch for a week in the summer heat. Ruined: $2,000.

One woman brought in more than $4,000 worth of diabetes testing supplies that had been shipped to her father. She had asked the supplier to stop sending supplies, as he had more than he could ever use. They sent so much, they had to throw the stuff out to make room for the new stuff. She called the Medicare fraud, waste and abuse hotline. She has since received two more shipments.

I'm stupified.


Theresa Flaherty
Type 1 diabetes, 12.5 years