Test Strip Subscription Guide

 

It’s no secret that the cost of diabetes receives a lot of attention lately, and most of it’s been negative. The costs of health insurance, paying for insulin and other medications, and purchasing the other diabetes supplies you need to successfully manage Type 2 diabetes can add up.

Test strips can be costly, but you may be able to save money by signing up for a test strip subscription service. We compiled a list of popular companies that offer test strip subscription services and their pros and cons. Use this guide to help you decide which services are the most cost-effective for you.

Note: As with all subscription services, some offer month-to-month with free cancellation, while some require a minimum commitment. If you’d like to cancel, be sure to reach out to the company quickly so you don’t get charged!

 

Accu-Chek® Guide Subscription Program

The Accu-Chek  Subscription program comes with a free Accu-Chek Guide Me meter and starts at $19.99 per month. It allows you to customize how many test strips you need and how often you want to get shipments, up to 300 test strips per month. No prescription is necessary.

Pros

  • Receive a FREE Accu-Chek Guide Me meter.
  • Always pay the same price for Accu-Chek Guide test strips, with flexible options.
  • Strip deliveries every month in quantities of 50, 100 or 300.
  • No prescription needed.
  • Free shipping to your home on all subscription orders.

Cons

  • The Accu-Chek Guide Me meter is Accu-Chek’s latest and greatest meter on the market, but if you’re a fan of another meter in the Accu-Chek portfolio, this program only applies to the Accu-Chek Guide platform.
  • The pricing in this program cannot be combined with health insurance coverage or government healthcare programs, however, it is usually FSA eligible and the costs of this subscription service may be less than out-of-pocket insurance costs.

mySugr

The mySugr Bundle provides individualized support, unlimited test strips and a highly-rated app to help you understand YOUR diabetes. When you keep track of things like blood sugars, weight, carbs, mood, and activity, you learn what makes your blood sugars go sky-high or bottom out. The more you log, the more data your healthcare team has to better address your care. And with the mySugr Bundle, you also have your very own certified diabetes coach available to you to help you figure it all out. You can speak with them as much or as little as you would like. The Starter Kit includes an Accu-Chek®Fast Clix lancing device, lancets, an Accu-Chek® Guide Me meter, and truly unlimited test strips.  Because the meter synchronizes to the mySugr app, your strips inventory is counted and sent when you need them without any extra thought on your part. With the mySugr Bundle, learn how to better manage your diabetes with the support and supplies you need. The cost is $49/month and there is a 3-month commitment required.

The mySugr Bundle includes:

Immediate access to:

Within days, your starter kit arrives with:

  • 250 test strips (5 boxes of 50 Accu-Chek® Guide strips)
  • 17 drums of 6 preloaded lancets (102 lancets)
  • 1 FastClix Lancing Device

Ongoing access to:

  • Unlimited test strips, automatically shipped based on how many you use
  • Full access to a certified diabetes educator
  • mySugr app Pro features

Pros

  • The mySugr app is highly rated with an average rating of 4.6 stars and over 1.7 million users
  • Automatic shipping based on your usage means you have one less thing to keep track of
  • If you want affordable access to unlimited strips and high-quality diabetes coaching, this may be a great option for you

Cons

  • This program cannot be combined with health insurance coverage or government healthcare programs.
  • If you are a fan of a meter outside of the Accu-Chek® Guide platform, this program only supports Accu-Chek® Guide strips.

DiaThrive

DiaThrive is another affordable subscription service. Believing that people with diabetes should be able to check their blood sugar as often as they want, Diathrive helps people with diabetes use their numbers to understand what affects their blood sugar and make informed decisions to optimize their own health. They also work directly with their manufacturers to cut out the middle-men that add layers of unnecessary costs to testing supplies. The first shipment comes with meter, case, lancing device, 100 lancets, a 3-month supply of test strips (based on chosen testing frequency), and control solution. Diathrive plans start as low as $8 per month. For example, if someone checks blood sugar once per day and creates a subscription for 100 strips to be delivered every 3 months, we bill $24 at each quarterly shipment; $8/month equivalent.

Pros:

  • Build your own plan. Diathrive subscribers can build their own plan based on the frequency of their testing: one-time purchase, every month, every 3 months, and every 6 months.
  • High quality. The company works with manufacturers with exceptional quality assurance practices and proven accuracy. Their products are FDA-approved.
  • Bypass the complex healthcare system. No prescription needed, and Diathrive doesn’t process insurance. So nobody limits how many times you can check per day.
  • Free meter, case, lancing device and lancets with your first order. Always free shipping on your subscription within the USA.
  • Free Diabetes education mobile app. Learn from diabetes professionals in the palm of your hand at your own pace (iOS or Android).
  • HSA and FSA can be used to buy their products.
  • An offering of other products available such as insulin pen needles.
  • 100% money-back guarantee and a 5-year warranty on meters.

Cons:

  • Diathrive‘s current meter does not have a Bluetooth connection, however, it’s in development.
  • Diathrive does not yet have a mobile app to sync blood sugar numbers and view data. Users can purchase a cable available so users can upload their readings to a PC-based program.
  • Diathrive does not have an “unlimited plan”. But, they do not limit how many you can purchase, and your cost will remain low. Order as needed.

One Drop

One Drop is a system that combines glucose monitoring with an app for your smartphone, making your diabetes management mobile and digital. The One Drop subscription service is called One Drop Premium.

You pay an initial fee of $80 for the One Drop Chrome setup, which includes a meter, lancing device, initial test strips, lancets, and a case. You can then choose to pay annually or per month for a premium subscription. If you choose the former, you’d pay $40 per month. Subscribers are allowed to cancel anytime. This subscription includes 24/7 access to a CDE, who is available to answer questions, troubleshoot, and give tips and tricks. You can message your CDE right from the app and receive a response within minutes!

One Drop analyzes your usage of test strips and will send you the appropriate amount you need each month, essentially offering unlimited access to test strips. It will also let you know your estimated number remaining and send an alert when you are running low.

Pros

  • No insurance is necessary to participate in the One Drop program. U.S. customers receive free shipping.
  • Diabetes support, programs, and other advice are available on demand through the One Drop Experts feature on the One Drop app (iPhone, Android).
  • You can reorder your supplies directly from the app.
  • The app is also on Apple Watch — it allows for quick viewing and logging.
  • The One Drop Professionals feature offers healthcare providers a connection to their patients’ data for continual support.
  • The meter connects to the One Drop app via bluetooth, so it automatically logs blood glucose readings.
  • The One Drop meter case is sleek and made of “vegan” leather.

Cons

  • The One Drop monthly payment option costs $80 more per year than paying for the annual subscription.
  • The meter only shows numbers, there are no options to log entries directly on a meter, as this can be done in the smartphone app; some may find this inconvenient.
  • The parts occasionally slip out of the case, so it may be worth it to put meter and strips in a more secure case.

Dario

Dario takes the mobile idea a step further with a meter that connects to a smartphone, allowing users to check their blood glucose directly on their phone. Readings are uploaded to the Dario app, where users can track their trends. Dario is an out-of-pocket service that gives people with diabetes another way to receive test strips other than the pharmacy.

Dario subscribers can choose between a monthly subscription program and a pay-as-you-go plan. Shipments are sent every three months, and subscribers can choose from options that offer monthly allotments of 50, 100, 200, or 300 test strips.

The price breakdown is set up so if you sign up for 50 strips per month, it would cost you $37.50 every three months or $12.50 per month. Other items, like the Dario meter, are sold separately.

Pros

  • The Dario app has some cool features that include “hypo alerts” and an option that sends a text message with your GPS location in the event of an emergency.
  • Dario also doesn’t require customers to have insurance. But, if you do have health insurance, you can still sign up for the subscription service.

Cons

  • Dario system leaves users without a place to put used test strips, as there is no carrying case for your phone like there is for a meter

Other Systems

  1. Livongo is a free system that includes a glucose meter, unlimited test strips and personal diabetes coaching. In order to sign up for Livongo, you must have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, and you must be eligible through your employer or health plan.
  2. While not subscription services, you may be eligible for cheaper meters and test strips—in many cases, whether you have private insurance or not—by using co-pay cards for LifeScan’s OneTouch strips, Abbott’s Freestyle strips, or Ascensia’s Contour meters and strips. Walmart’s brand ReliOn also has a meter and 50 test strips available for $15, with additional test strips available for $9 per 50 strips.

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If you’ve been trying to figure out how often you should check your blood sugar, wonder no more — we tell you here.

 

*Accu-Chek, Accu-Chek Aviva Plus, Accu-Chek Guide, Accu-Chek Guide SimplePay, and Accu-Check are trademarks of Roche.