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New to bipolar 1.

Do you have it and does it cover your needs?

by Animalover » Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:42 am

Hello. New to being Bipolar 1 since late 2016. What happens if you don't have health insurance? How do you get medicine even if you can't afford the doctor who prescribes them to you?
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by AvantGarde » Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:46 am

Welcome Animalover :) I'm not from the US but some of our other members are, so hopefully someone can help you out.

I do know that some pdocs (psychiatrists) sometimes can give out free samples.

Have you applied for disability or are considering it? It's an option, if you can't make ends meet with what money you have.
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by Animalover » Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:56 am

I have though about disability but I'm only 24. I am too young to be on disability. And I am scared I won't make enough to live on if I do go on disability now. I won't be able to retire when I'm old.
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by Spm24 » Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:04 am


Welcome to the forum... You will find many caring and compassionate people here.

There are programs through some of the big pharm companies that have program for little or no cost. There are also places you can go and get you pdoc on a sliding scale on your ability to pay. Local health facilities that handle low income patients can help you more then I can..

Maybe someone else will have more info for you.
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by Duckysmom » Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:05 am

I'm in the US. Most counties/cities in the US have state run clinics. I had to use one for psych meds/follow up for a time when I didn't have insurance. Have you checked with your closest health dept to see if they have psych care available? Where are you located?
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by JackAsher » Tue Aug 29, 2017 11:24 pm

I was diagnosed in the dark days before Obamacare, and I've been around this one.
(You mention insurance, so I assume you're in the States.)

First go here ... ners.shtml

The federal gumm'nt distributes a stipend fund to every state to help people without insurance get mental health help. Unfortunately because it just goes to the state, every state is different. I know my way around Colorado and Texas, but beyond that you're gonna have to push. That link takes you to the partners for the NIMH. They're the non-profits that will be actually distributing the care. Find your state, so to their site, and see if you can find a link like "Get Help".

This is going to take a bit to work out. I know in Texas you need a referral from a doctor to see a registered psychologist who works for the state, for instance.

THIS WILL NOT BE FREE. In most cases it will work on a pay scale according to your financial means. You might be asked to bring in some tax information, you might not. Again, it depends on your state.

As far as paying for meds, there are two ways. The first is to go here:
Shortly after Obamacare got put in place these discount things started popping up. I honestly have no idea what part of the law set them up. Goodrx catalogs each discount program, offers you a card (for free) (there are several different kinds) and will tell you the cheapest discount card, and the cheapest pharmacy to get the drugs. You can get the app for your phone for free, and it provides every card you might want or need.

The discounts very from %75 to %5, with each drug. A $487 prescription for xyprexa for instance went down to $65 for instance, while a $655 prescription for lamictal went down to $635. It's hit or miss.

If you're living below the poverty line, the drug companies have a plan in place to prove they aren't monsters. Each company has a program you can enroll in, and get your meds for free. They make you jump through every hoop, and then find some more hoops and make you jump through those too.

Good luck, and if you need more help put something here, and I'll do my best to get you into the NIMH for your state.
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by MochaAdmin » Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:56 am

Animalover.......someone mentioned disability.

Have you thought or heard of SSI?

Doesn't mean you would have to be on it forever, but sure could help you in the meantime if you qualify. I also don't know what state you live in (if you're in the states), but there's also Medicaid, and in CA we have MediCal.......meds would be covered, along with regular physicians.

Also, as Ducky said, most states have free community mental health centers. You can see a pdoc/tdoc and sometimes your meds will be covered.

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by 50calty » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:44 am

I would also check out NAMI. Each state has a local office and IMO would be your best bet to get help. They have tons of resources and help steer you in the right direction.
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by JackAsher » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:25 pm

As far as disability goes, there was an article in the New York Times a couple of years ago, and they had an interview with one of the caseworkers. She said that, in 30 years, she had seen one case go through without being denied on the first try. Every other case had to appeal, and the appeal process can take years.

A guy staying in my hotel has screwed up his neck so bad he can't ever work again. No voice, can't do customer calls; can't sit for too long, can't stand for too long, and can't lift more than 10 pounds. He's in his third year of waiting to get a hearing.

You can try getting a lawyer, but it's definitely not a short term solution.
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