Hello, my name is Elizabeth Reinbold and I am a 65-year-old from Vacaville, California. For most of my life I was relatively healthy –– but this all changed in 1996 when I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease, a condition in which my immune system attacks my thyroid.
I retired at the age of 57 because of this illness. I couldn’t walk down the street when I was especially sick; I could hardly function. My doctor tried to help me as much as possible and prescribed me medicine. Unfortunately, Medicare doesn’t cover the thyroid medicine prescribed to me by my doctor: Armour Thyroid.
“Another drug I need, Rifaximin, is $1000 for two weeks.”
- Elizabeth Reinbold
I am on a fixed income that isn’t too high, so I have a limited budget left after rent and bills. My Armour Thyroid costs $25 for a bottle, and Medicare doesn’t help any with the cost. $25 may not be much for some, but it’s pricey to me. I also have to pay for recommended enzymes and vitamins, and I try to eat healthy food. It all adds up, and $25 is simply too much for someone in my position.
Another drug I need, Rifaximin, is $1,000 for two weeks in the US. I have small intestine bacterial overgrowth, and it causes a lot of pain and suffering. Without this medication, I can’t treat it, and it gets increasingly worse with time. I have to order Rifaximin from Canada for $179 for 100 tablets. My fiance helps me a little bit, but it’s still so costly.
If I weren’t able to get my medication, it would be a great detriment to my quality of life. I love to be involved with my church and volunteer as much as possible. I wouldn’t be able to do these things if I couldn’t get my medicine, or if the price goes up at all. I simply wouldn’t be able to walk due to the pain. We need lower drug prices as soon as possible.