Lost insurance, need advice, please help

I was diagnosed with type one diabetes in october of 2009 but have continued to work since then. I live in pennsylvania and have always been eligible for something called workers with disabilites program which gave me state health insurance for a monthly premium that i could actually afford based on my income. i don't have a college degree and usually make a little more than minimum wage so my premium is usually $35 and i dont have to worry about copays more than $1.

i gave birth to my son in may of 2012. i did return to work but eventually had to quit due to not being able to afford daycare. my case worker sent me paperwork to fill out to keep my health insurance. one paper was an employability form. i thought that my case worker wanted me to sign up for disability, which i didnt understand because i am not interested in receiving ssi checks. therefore i filled out the paperwork with a clear cut "yes i can work"

because i do not consider myself as disabled to the point where i need monthly ssi checks, the government has now denied me health insurance. i explained to my case worker that i need medication every month to simply stay alive and without inurance there is no way i can afford it! she literally said, "sorry, unfortunately you are not eligible for assistance."

so what am i supposed to do?? die?!?! im so upset right now and honestly have no idea what to do! i dont work because i take care of my son full time. im not being a lazy bum trying to leech the system. im just trying to get my necessary medications. and i filled out the employability form with good faith. i wasnt going to lie and say i felt like i 100% couldnt work because i have diabetes.

im beyond upset and am quite honestly very scared right now. has anyone ever had these troubles? what can i do? do i even have any other options?

this doesnt seem right =(
i dont undertsand how/why the government wont help! am i or my case worker missing something?

Your case worker is certainly missing empathy. I suggest speaking to your case worker's supervisor and telling her that although you physically can work which is why you answered the question as you did, you cannot afford daycare and therefore cannot hold down a job at this time.

You may need to apply for welfare to qualify for Medicaid. If that is the case, please apply. You have a six month old child who needs a healthy mother who isn't focused 24 hours a day on keeping herself alive. I would think that you would qualify for assistance for a period of time under the Welfare to Work rules.

If that doesn't work, try to contact a local free legal services program so that you can have someone who knows the laws and how to fight for your rights in your corner.

Good luck and take care,


I think what Maurie says is true.
My husband and I have leaned on Medicaid a few times in our marriage when the chips were down. Contact your county Human Resource offices, get an appointment. It can't hurt to talk to someone. I've been on for two of my early pregnancies and stayed on when my husband lost his job. So yeah. No fun, but I wouldn't be here very well if we hadn't done it.

well my case worker is from the department of public welfare. what i was on was a form of medicaid.

i dont know, i just cant get over the fact that the welfare office in my county doesnt care that i take life sustaining medications.. expensive ones at that!

Oh, that is strange... makes you wanna get pregnant or something. Just Kidding!! :P Sometimes that's the only way they'll look at you. Hmmm.

Have you talked to your Endo? Are you on a pump? You could even talk to a rep in those two fields. They've dealt with this and would know all the loopholes, I imagine...or would hope.

This is the very unfortunate reality of our traditional health care system. Hopefully, the Affordable Care Act will help change this over time, as the state health insurance exchanges and other supports available in the act will mean that people like us will be able to obtain health insurance in the private market.

BUT, until then.....

- When you begin to run out of insulin and your BG starts going up, get to an ER immediately. They will provide you with the basics of what you need to stay alive.

- Under the law, lack of childcare is not a justifiable reason for obtaining Medicaid. You may want to check out your county/state's assistance programs for day care (many offer stipends to assist with childcare). You may be able to find some affordable day care for your child, thus enabling you to get back to work. Whatever you do, DO NOT cite this as a reason for being unable to work. It will make you ineligible.

- I am a little confused because income is usually the only requirement they look at for Medicaid eligibility. Is your child on SCHIP (the state health insurance program for children)? In some states, if a child is eligible for SCHIP, the parent is also eligible. Look into that. It varies by state, but your case worker should be able to help.

- Call the office of your elected officials (Congressional representatives or Senator). Sometimes, the aides in these offices are able to assist in getting you into the right program. Also, it helps to make they aware that this is the reality for many people under our current system.

- If you have an endo currently, call him/her, explain the situation, and see if there are any samples they can hook you up with.

- Go to Walmart and stock up on some cheap basics. Walmart sells Regular and NPH insulins for $25/vial, and they also now offer some inexpensive test strips and meters. Not perfect, but it will keep you alive in a pinch.

- Like someone else suggested, if you use a pump, call the manufacturer and see what assistance they can offer. I know Minimed has an assistance program for low-income individuals.

- Some states and counties offer low-income assistance programs for pharmacy items. Look into that. A case worker should direct you to resources.

I hope some of these suggestions help. Please keep us posted as to your progress. Please make sure to post any updates on your progress, as it could be of help to others. Sadly, this is a common issue people post about.