Test Strip Subscription Guide
If you’re looking to cut down on blood sugar testing spending without neglecting your diabetes management, test strip subscriptions are one option to consider. We compiled a rundown of popular companies that offer test strip subscription services and researched each of them to give you some important info. None require insurance (and are often less expensive than getting test strips through your insurance!) or a doctor’s prescription. Take a look!
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!
DiaThrive is a simple blood sugar testing system that, while it does not come with a smartphone app like some of the other subscription services we outline below (but you can download your data to your computer using a simple $2 cable provided by the company), offers incredibly low cost supplies.
Amazon User Review as of June 2021: 4.2 out of 5 stars
- $10 for a one-time meter purchase. A lancing device and case are supplied for free.
- $8 per 50 test strips; you choose how many you would like delivered once, every month, every three months, or every six months. Lancets are supplied for free.
- If you choose a subscription service, your plan is adjustable at any time.
The details: DiaThrive’s Meter Kit (which includes a meter, lancing device and a case) is just $10, then you build your plan based on how many test strips you need and how often you’d like them delivered. DiaThrive is the simplest, but also by far the least expensive, of the test strip subscription plans. However, it does not have a smartphone app—numbers are only seen on the meter itself, and no trend reports or in-app guidance is available. There is also no coaching option. But if you’re looking for a reliable and inexpensive option, DiaThrive is your go to!
One Drop is a system that combines blood glucose monitoring with an app for your smartphone, making your diabetes management mobile and digital.
Amazon User Review as of June 2021: 4.1 out of 5 stars
- $21-41 per month for meter + kit, plus 50-100 test strips
- $80 per month for meter + kit, unlimited test strips
- $90 per month for the above, plus one-on-one personalized coaching via app
- Pause or cancel at any time, no insurance or doctor’s prescription necessary
The details: One Drop’s Smart Glucose Meter Kit (which includes a meter, lancing device, initial test strips, lancets and a case) comes as part of a subscription, which ranges from $21-90 per month, depending on the service you choose, with a slight discount if paid annually.
Monthly test strip subscriptions cost $21 to $80 per month depending on how many test strips you need, with $80 per month covering unlimited test strips. With the coaching option, which is $90 per month, you can message your coach right from the app and responses arrive within minutes.
You can track your blood sugars and patterns over time through the One Drop app, available on iPhone and Android. If you’ve paid for the coaching option (which can also be purchased separately and used with other meters or technology for $20 per month), you are connected with a personal coach via text chat who will help track and respond to trends, troubleshoot and create a plan of action to attain consistently healthy blood sugar numbers. The One Drop app also connects with most other health trackers and works on Apple Watch.
Dario takes the mobile idea a step further with a meter that connects to a smartphone (where the charger plugs in), allowing users to check their blood glucose directly on their phone. Please note: this means you should double check your phone’s compatibility before ordering. Readings are uploaded to the Dario app, where users can track their trends.
Amazon User Review as of June 2021: 4.4 out of 5 stars
- $30 per month, paid quarterly, for meter, 100 lancets, unlimited test strips
- $40 per month, paid quarterly, for for the above plus one-on-one personalized coaching via app
- $85 per month, paid quarterly, for the above plus monthly appointments with a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE)
- Without a subscription, you can also buy the meter ($85 for the meter, 10 lancets and 25 test strips), lancets ($9 for 100) and test strips ($60 for 100)
- Pause or cancel at any time, no insurance or doctor’s prescription necessary
The details: Dario subscribers can choose between a monthly subscription program (which includes unlimited test strips and 100 lancets every three months) or a pay-as-you-go setup. The blood sugar meter and app tracks how often you are testing your blood sugar and automatically sends test strip refills as you need them.
While subscriber’s can receive everything they need to check their blood sugar, plus unlimited test strips for $30 per month, the Pro program includes the same supplies, plus access to a personal coach to help with your day to day blood sugar management, for $40 per month. There is also a Premium program option, which provides monthly check-ins with a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE), a good option if you need more hands on time with a healthcare professional between your regular doctor appointments, for $85 per month.
If you do not choose a subscription model, you can also purchase test strips ($60 for 100) and lancets ($9 for 100) as you need them. The Dario meter, which much be purchased to use the test strips, is about $85 for the starter kit, which includes the meter, 10 lancets and 25 test strips. Dario also sells a blood pressure monitoring system, which connects into a smartphone app as well.
Accu-Chek® Guide SimplePay and Accu-Chek® To
Roche offers two different test strip subscription programs—Accu-Chek Guide SimplePay and Accu-Chek To.
The Accu-Chek Guide SimplePay 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.
- Receive a FREE Accu-Chek Guide Me meter.
- Always pay the same price for Accu-Chek Guide test strips, with flexible options.
- Deliveries every one, two, three, or six months.
- No prescription needed.
- Free shipping to your home on all subscription orders.
- 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 program, however, it is usually FSA eligible and the costs of this subscription service may be less than out-of-pocket insurance costs.
Roche’s Accu-Chek To program aims to elevate everyday blood glucose testing with both testing supplies and bonus healthy lifestyle products. The company offers two options for subscribers: 1 box of 50 test strips, which comes with a monthly selection of Accu-Chek’s favorite partner products, or 2 boxes of 50 strips and the monthly partner products.
50-strip subscriptions cost $30 per month and 100-strip subscriptions cost $50 per month. The packages can be shipped every one, two, three, or six months, depending on your preference, and subscribers are billed monthly.
- First-time Accu-Chek users are offered a free meter and can choose from two options: Accu-Chek Aviva Plus and Accu-Chek Guide.
- Subscriptions include a new selection of healthy lifestyle products each month, including tasty snacks, skincare and hygiene products, teas and more.
- Free ground shipping on all other orders.
- While the Accu-Check To program does include the collection of bonus products and applies to more than one Accu-Chek meter platform, the monthly price point is more expensive than the Accu-Chek Guide SimplePay program.
The mySugr Bundle provides diabetes coaching with certified diabetes educators right in the app along with unlimited Accu-Chek® Guide test strips with free automatic delivery. Because the meter synchronizes to the mySugr app, the service automatically sees when you need more strips and delivers them without any extra thought on your part. There are no orders to place, no buttons to press and no calls to make. This frees you from keeping track of testing supplies or worrying about how often to check blood sugars. Mastering your diabetes data doesn’t mean adding steps to your routine.
The cost is $49/month and there is a three-month commitment required.
The mySugr Bundle includes:
Immediate access to:
- mySugr app Pro features
- In-app access to a diabetes coach
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
- 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
- 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.
- Livongo is a free system that includes a blood 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.
- 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.
Do you have any thoughts about test strip subscriptions? Join the conversation: check out the Beyond Type 1 Community thread about test strip subscriptions and let us know what you think!