Can you get a free insulin pump?

Hi all,i was wondering if anyone knows if you can get a free insulin pump anyway atall,im am only on new start benifits and in NO way can aford to buy one,all so dose any one know if you can buy them second hand i have been now diagnosed with gastroparesis and one would help me control my way out of whack bsl’s,any info would be great:-D

Hi Jeffery,

There is a subsidised program that the government runs, but you have to pay for half the pump. Not much good to you, I guess.

You may also be able to get a second-hand, donated pump. Get in touch with Animas, Medtonic as well as your diabetes educator who could make some inquiries for you with some of the larger diabetes clinics in Australia.

From time to time, people do ask Insulin for Life (IFL) if we take donated pumps, but we haven’t had anyone asking lately, and we haven’t taken them in the past but have redirected them to their local diabetes clinic.

The other option is to beg and borrow and get private health insurance - hospital cover only - for one year and a few months (get order it and get it all set up etc). That’s how I got my pump.

Keep at it. You don’t ask, you don’t get!

cool,thank you very much

You can borrow onw from your hosp diabetes endo …well I have. i’m a student living on Austudy and one was available and they offered it to me for up to 2 years…until I’v ebeen able to take out private hospital cover for 12 ths then they organise my own, completely covered by insurance.

cool,if you dont mind me asking…how much a month dose it cose you for the privet health fund to cover the cost of one and how much is a pump worth?medtronic said they would lend me one for 12 months untill i pass the 12 month whating period for the privet health fund to cover it.thanks heaps:-D

I haven’t chosen which health fund yet 'cause I want to shop around for the best price. If you go online to the Gov. Dept of Health & Aging website they list all Aussie health insurers. Here you should find this service is provided for us, the consumers, to make comparisons and best choices between different insurers. It is very comprehensive. Each insurance company lists their prices for health insurance packages, outlines what each different package covers, the waiting period for qualifying etc. (in case I’m wrong…ring Medicare, not medibank… and ask, they will tell you the name of the website). Once you’ve done this and chosen a few best options/insurers, and got their details…ring them and check they FULLY COVER COST of an an insulin pump…its listed under hospital cover as a ‘prosthetic’ or something that soundz like that. I don’t know costs yet 'cause I’ve haven’t done my research into insurers BUT cost of an insulin pump is about $8,000.000. That’s why you need to make sure they’ll cover total cost. Good luck Jeffrey. You’ve reminded me I need to get onto this myself too. Thanx a lot! Anne

Hi Jeffrey, at the moment if you have basic hospital cover with whatever private health insurance company you choose they MUST cover the cost of the pump. The cost of the insurance will vary a lot on your particular situation but as Anne said do shop around.

I got my pump through Medtronic, to start with I was given a loan pump until my 12 month waiting period was complete and then I got my own pump all paid for by the private health (was around $7750.00). The only thing is that I was required to be admitted to a hospital for setup / training which I had to pay for (only a few hours but that might vary depending on where you go some are an overnighter). Off the top of my head I can’t remember how much that was but check it out first.

The Reality Check web site/forum is an EXCELLENT source of info, mostly Aussies on there with local Australian knowledge of starting pumping etc. I am a member on it and MANY of the others there are on pumps, from those just starting to those that have been using one for many years. You can search through the history of things people have asked in the past. Any questions you may have is almost guaranteed to have been asked by someone before.

I just came across this post & thought it worth mentioning that JDRF have a program called Freedom Grants. You have to get your diabetes educator or paed to apply & there is rather strict criteria but if successful they will fully fund a pump at no cost to you. We were fortunate enough to receive a phone call from our DE asking us if we would like her to apply for one for our son. The most important thing is that you have a family health care card, not just for your child but for the whole family. We are waiting to find out, I know the applications close at the end of Feb 2010. Hope this helps.