Running out of COBRA and unemployment

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Topic review

Expand view Topic review: Running out of COBRA and unemployment

Re: Running out of COBRA and unemployment

Post by dlcnurse » Fri Aug 19, 2011 1:59 am

links and topic updated 8/19/11 dlcnurse

Post by dlcnurse » Sat May 15, 2010 2:05 am

Here are a few suggestions that may be of help to you for health care are:
1)Free clinics
2)Your local Health Department
3)Your local hospital may have a diabetes educater that can assist you with resources available in your area, or the social worker is another resource person that can help provide you with resources for health care in your area.

Here is a link that will provide you with free clinics in NJ. Some of the clinics that are listed do charge a small fee, usually about $20.00 but all are free or low cost.
Or state specific is

Some of the medications that you listed also can be obtained for $4.00 for 30 day supplies. Atenolol, cholesterol medications are Lovastin,Pravastin, or Simvastin are also $4.00 for 30 day supplies. Triglyceride medications, the two that are mostly prescribed are Lopid and Tricor. Lopid is actually a fairly cheap cost while Tricor is not. If using Tricor, talk to your physcian and see if he would consider the cheaper medication.
Some other ways to lower Triglyceride levels is by diet, and using fish oil, or niacin. Both options would need to be discussed with your physician prior to consideration.

Here is also a site that offers free quides to help you be informed on making insurance decisions. This site is very informative in giving you options when switching from COBRA to a individual insurance plan. One area that you need to explore is whether you are HIPPA eligible. There are specific criteria that needs to be met which is disclosed in this guide.

When you have pre-existing health issues, this could be very important. Policies sold to HIPPA eligible individuals cannot impose pre-existing exclusion periods when offering insurance plans.
The general site is located here: or state specific for DC is
or for NJ it is ... new-jersey

Hopefully these will get you started in determining a individual insurance plan, and in obtaining medications that you can afford.

Post by Parquet » Fri May 14, 2010 11:48 am

Hi Seadreamer! I am fairly new here but I have some ideas that might help.

As I understand it the major problem is when your COBRA runs out and you are unemployed. Very few people qualify for drug company "Prescription Aid Programs" ( PAPs). You will not qualify if you have any insurance covering medications or if you earn money (most PAPs say a minimum wage individual working more than 30 hours per week makes too much money!). Your situation should allow you to qualify for many programs.

There are "services" that will charge you a monthly fee to apply to PAPs. Unless you have a severe mental disability then they are a waste of money.

A good place to start is a list at

An easier place to handle most medications at the same time is It is a totally free service that quickly identifies programs you might qualify for and then does as much of the applications for you as they can. They cover 475 programs that offer more than 2,500 brand-name medicines, including a wide range of generics.

Make sure you include your lower cost drugs because there is no use paying for anything you don't have to.

Good luck!


A few resources

Post by NoPocketCash » Thu May 13, 2010 9:41 pm

Hi Seadreamer,

Welcome to New Jersey! Seriously, there are a lot of good things in the Garden State. I grew up and lived most of my life there. I have many fond memories and still come back to visit. One of our other volunteers will be posting with some options for you that are not specific to NJ, so I'll keep this reply strictly to what you may find in NJ alone.

As you obviously know, your situation is pretty complicated no matter where you live. There are many programs and services for senior citizens over 65 and the disabled, and NJ leads the pack with excellent prescription benefits if you fall into one of those categories. Unfortunately, your post seems to indicate that you fall between those cracks.

Rather than speculate on or ask a lot of questions about your other circumstances, I'm going to point you to some URLs that will hopefully get you going in the right direction. You may find that some of them don't directly apply to your situation but they should give you a clearer understanding of NJ policies and programs. After reading through them, you may be better able to weigh your options.

This site gives a good clear explanation of the government aid and services available in NJ and how they affect each other:

The next 2 links are directly from the NJ Department of Human Services.


Welfare/General Assistance:

NJ Department of Health and Senior Services - Important information on NJ's Prescription Assistance to the Aged and Disabled:

Finally, if you reach the point of being eligible for Medicare - whether through Social Security Disability or Retirement - NJ has a Health Insurance Assistance Program with volunteers to help you navigate the waters you're swimming in right now. The catch is that it is only applicable to those eligible for Medicare:

I hope this gives you some of the basics. Most likely it will bring up more questions, so don't hesitate to ask!


Post by jimithy » Thu May 13, 2010 7:12 pm


Sorry about the slow reply but as you know... your problems are complex.

I've contacted someone with experience dealing with assistance programs in NJ. A post will follow once verifiable info is compiled.

I've let other members knowledgeable with the intricacies of COBRA know about your post.

Your problems were not created in a day (congress is much slower than that! ) so please give us a few days to give you as many options as possible.

Thanks for posting!


Running out of COBRA and unemployment

Post by seadreamer » Wed May 12, 2010 11:58 pm

I am almost 61, have 3 months of COBRA reduced and 3 months of COBRA regular and then I need to find insurance. I live in NJ, moved in with my mother when I was laid off in DC. I collect unemployment from DC but that pays for food and whatever my insurance doesn't pay for medications.

It seems that the insurance most popular here would cost me about $515/month and would have a co-pay of only 50% on Humalog 75/25 and Levimir lfex pens --- after a $500 annual maximum payment from insurance I would be expected to pay for these drugs (along with generic atenolol, cholesterol, triglyceride drugs) by myself.

My question is I am simply not going to be able to afford it even with DC unemployment --- I am scared to think of what is going to happen when I don't even have unemployment --- i have no savings and my mother's on a fixed income and can only provide me free housing.

I have found Xubex that seems to be able to provide free medications with a minimum of fuss but the rest of them it seems require that you have no insurance at all before you can qualify --- for the time being I am okay but I am thinking of what happens quickly down the road. i find myself in a catch-22 position, too young to get on medicare yet really too old to get the type of jobs and salaries i was getting before being laid off. DC is good for jobs --- here in NJ it's pathetic -- I'm at least glad that I have a place to live --- DC unemployment is $347 per week --- not a helluva lot when you're paying for insurance, medications that insurance doesn't cover, doctor's visits, cab fare since i don't drive anymore --- cabs in DC, with a job, was a no-brainer --- here in NJ you have to have a car --- otherwise you might as well sign your whole unemployment check over to diamond or yellow cab --- can't believe the prices they charge.

So now I am concerned, found your website and am wondering if any of you might recognize my predicament and have any advice to help me.

Thanks --- seadreamer