Ostomy supplies

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 552
   Posted 6/17/2008 11:15 PM (GMT -6)   
Are supplies covered under insurance? How much are we going to have to lay out each month for supplies? Does the hospital give you enough supplies until you figure out what to buy and you get them? Where do you get them?
--Mom of bratcat (17 years old)--
Daughter bratcat was diagnosed with pancolitis October 2006
Current meds:
Asacol - 4 pills/3Xday, 15 mg prednisone, Remicade
11/14/06 - started prednisone; 1/28/07 - finished prednisone!
3/3/07 - began to taper off hydrocortisone sloowwly! Summer 2007 - slowly began tapering Rowasa. 9/07 -- flaring? Nightly Rowasa. 9/21/07 -- added hydrocortisone enemas. 9/30/07--added prednisone. 10/31--started 6-mp, stopped the enemas. Started lowering prednisone. 3/08-another flare!

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 99
   Posted 6/17/2008 11:39 PM (GMT -6)   

I can only speak for my insurance, Aetna.  They cover supplies 100% through Sterling Medical but they do give you the run around if you call them and ask who to go through.  No written script needed just the number to your surgeon's office when you talk to the Sterling rep. and he/she will verify you needing supplies.  My first order went smooth as silk so hopefully the rest will too.

As far as supplies from the hospital they only sent me home with three bags but my ET nurse ordered me a starter kit from Hollister that arrived at my house right after I got released.  I also went on the Coloplast site and others to request samples so just from that I could probably go a month no problem and maybe even two.  I change appliances about every 6 or 7 days.


Total Colectomy with End Ileostomy May 27th, 2008

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 137
   Posted 6/18/2008 7:39 AM (GMT -6)   

I am a new ostomate (a month and a half old), and have been learning about how getting my supplies works! :)

-My ostomy nurse sent me home with well over a month of supplies.  If your nurse sends you home and you think they are not giving you enough supplies, just ASk for more!  They are more than happy you accommodate (its not like its their money..!)

-My ostomy nurse also set up my account with a local ostomy supplier while I was in the hospital (all I had to do was sign a paper), and she ordered my first batch of supplies which I got 2 weeks after returning home.

-Your nurse will order the type of bags/products that she thinks will work best for you for that first batch.  She may ask you if you want clear or opaque, or something like that.  I was told that if I wanted different bags, etc., than what she had picked out, I would just have to call the supplier and ask for them.

-In order to figure out which bags I liked best, I called Coloplast and asked for free samples (my nurse gave me a catalogue to see what types of supplies are out there--there are LOTS), I decided which ones I liked, and then called my local supplier and they changed my order--easy!

-Every month, my supplier calls me on the 12th to see if I want the same supplies as last month, or if I want to add/change anything before they send it.  This is nice, because I would forget to call them! :)

-All my supplies are covered 100%.  I have Blue Cross blue Shield PPO.  They also allow me to get way more supplies than I would need (20 bags and wafers each month, on top of the all the other products like paste, skin wipes, etc.).

I am in PA, and I assume this stuff works pretty much the same everywhere!  :)  Don't worry, this was the easy part--all the suppliers are very nice and very willing to help you and make sure you are happy! :)

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 28
   Posted 7/7/2008 2:18 AM (GMT -6)   
Not all insurances cover ostomy supplies. Make sure you check with yours ahead of time. I also go thru Aetna and LOVE them. I will never use another insurance carrier if at all possible. I once had an insurance company (I think it was blue cross, but I can't remember) tell me that ostomy supplies were not covered because they were considered to be comparable to a Band-Aid. I'm sure.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1251
   Posted 7/7/2008 9:17 AM (GMT -6)   
Yep, a few people from the US have told me that their insurance company won't pay for their supplies because they class ostomy supplies as 'cosmetic'! Yep, apparently, it's the latest fashion accessory according to them.

I tell people to go and sit in the insurance company's offices without a bag on and show them just how 'cosmetic' they really are!
I have had an ileostomy for 32 years now due to UC.
Moderator of the Ostomy Forum
I'm not a complete idiot - some parts of me are missing!

Equestrian Mom
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3115
   Posted 7/7/2008 2:53 PM (GMT -6)   

I am so glad MY insurance company covers my ostomy supplies...I would hate to have to act on Shaz's suggestion.  I am sure it would have a quick response!!

My insurance covers most of my supplies...I think I pay about $26 every two months for an invoice total of about $900.  I am an "on-line" kind of purchaser and use Edgepark Surgical for my supplies.  I have an account set up and I log on when I need to.  I order Eakin seals (which are packed by 20 pieces) so I always order enough wafers/pouches for one of those boxes...and I order them when I am on the last box of wafers.  The nice thing with online is all the numbers are there from my previous order and I just change the qty, update the screen and checkout.  Mine arrive 2 to 3 days after I place the order. 

What your daughter will be using from the hospital isn't what she'll have to stay with.  I know I hated the product I came home from the hospital with.  I did follow several suggestions from this forum to call Hollister/Convatec/Coloplast to get samples which made my decision really easy!!  Make sure to have her try clip/clipless pouches and one/two piece appliances...it is a VERY personal thing and it makes life so much nicer when you can get the job done right the first time!


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