This content originally appeared on diaTribe. Republished with permission.
By Eliza Skoler
If you’ve got unused diabetes supplies that you no longer need, don’t throw them away! Here are several easy ways that you can donate your supplies to others.
If you’ve recently switched to a new diabetes medication or device, you may have leftover diabetes supplies that you won’t need. It might feel like such a waste to throw away things like insulin vials, needles, and test strips, especially when there are many people in the world who cannot afford the diabetes devices and medication that they need to live healthy lives. The good news is that there are several ways to donate your supplies so that people who do need these items can receive them.
It’s important to know that your supplies should be unused and unopened – most donations will not be accepted if the supplies are no longer sealed, or if they have already expired.
Option 1: Contact your healthcare office
There is a chance that your care team collects unused diabetes supplies to provide to other people with diabetes. You can call and ask them about whether they are interested in your donation
Option 2: Contact local diabetes advocacy organizations
Diabetes education centers or local branches of advocacy organizations (like ADA or JDRF) may collect diabetes supplies themselves or be able to refer you to other donation sites.
Option 3: Mail your supplies to a national organization
We know of four national organizations currently accepting diabetes supplies donations: Insulin for Life, SafeNetRx, Integrated Diabetes Services, and CR3 Diabetes. The most well-known and widest-reaching of the three is Insulin for Life. Learn more about each organization below.
Insulin for Life is a non-profit organization that collects diabetes supplies from people in the US for redistribution all over the world to people who otherwise cannot access the life-saving treatments that they need. You can read our 2015 profile on Insulin for Life here.
Insulin for Life accepts the following supplies donations (with specific details and requirements for each found on their site). The organization does not accept pump supplies.
- Insulin Vials
- Insulin Pens
- Insulin Cartridges
- A1C Test Kits
- Glucose Meters
- Glucose Strips
- Lancing Devices
- Pen Needles
SafeNetRx collects medical supplies and redistributes them to people in need living in Iowa. To donate diabetes supplies, call 1-866-282-5817.
Integrated Diabetes Services collects many types of diabetes equipment and supplies (almost anything but lancets) to distribute by request to people with diabetes in the US and around the world. To donate or request supplies, call 1-877-735-3648.
CR3 Diabetes Association provides affordable diabetes devices and supplies (glucose meters, test strips, insulin pumps, and pump supplies) to people with diabetes across the world. CR3 Diabetes currently accepts:
- Medtronic insulin pumps – 630G, 670G, and 530G (models 551 and 751)
- Unexpired pump supplies
- Guardian3 sensors
- Glucose test strips
Thank you for taking the time to donate your old diabetes supplies to those who need it. At diaTribe we are grateful each day for the strength and generosity of the diabetes community. Given the immense need, we’re hopeful that someday soon there may be easier and more effective ways to also donate unused diabetes medications.