TOUCHED BY LYME: How to save money on certain Lyme-related lab tests
Paying out-of-pocket for lab testing can take a hefty toll on your family’s pocketbook. Here’s one way to save.
Most folks dealing with Lyme, even those with supposedly “good” insurance, end up paying out-of-pocket for many lab tests. Our family recently shelled out big bucks at Lab Corp. Then, a few weeks later, we had to go back again for more. But there was a difference this time. Between the two visits, I learned about a website called DirectLabs.com.
Here’s how it works:
You register on-line with DirectLabs. You indicate which tests you need and you pay up front with a credit card. You print out a requisition slip, which you take to your nearest Lab Corp office. That’s it.
Our two visits to Lab Corp within such a short time were virtually identical—except we saved a boatload of money the second time.
Your discount will vary by the test. A CD-57 gives you minor savings—you pay $129 instead of $143.
But DHEA costs $69 instead of $204. And a thyroid T3 is $74 instead of $285.
Depending on what you need, there could be considerable savings.
Turns out, DirectLabs is not the only website like this. Here are some others:
There is price variation among these websites, depending upon which test you order. It pays to comparison shop before you buy.
There are also variations by state—some sites don’t service customers in Rhode Island, New Jersey and New York. At least one site doesn’t serve Massachusetts. Different sites may use different lab companies. So, like everything else Lyme-related, you have to do your homework to figure out what works best for you.
So, how come there’s such a price difference between a person who walks in off the street and one who has previously registered with one of these websites? These companies have negotiated bulk deals with the labs, and are passing that savings along to their customers.
Works for me.
Note: If you are low-income and need Lyme diagnostic testing, you may qualify for a grant from Lyme-TAP. More information at www.LymeTap.com.
Contact blogger Dorothy Kupcha Leland at firstname.lastname@example.org.