Related article: Insurance coverage
Related article: Insurance coverage
One of the prerequisites for starting on the Marshall Protocol (MP), a treatment that generally lasts for many years, is the money and/or insurance necessary to pay for certain basic expenses. These expenses include clinic visits, laboratory tests, medications, and special protective sunglasses. Some of these costs are fully or partially covered by insurance. Patients can check their coverage before agreeing to a visit, test or medication so that they are aware of the potential cost. In the United States, insurance coverage varies widely. Patients usually obtain full insurance coverage for the Protocol. The support given on the MP study site is free.
Related article: Working with a Marshall Protocol physician
To do the MP, patients require a licensed physician, whose responsibility it is to monitor progress and prescribe the necessary medications. This cost of the physician depends on a couple factors:
Some patients have asked their physicians if they could cut costs by minimizing clinic visits. Some physicians allow patients to keep in touch via e-mail or phone.
Related article: Laboratory tests
While laboratory tests may be useful in monitoring progress and immunopathology, there is only one laboratory test an MP patient absolutely needs to get with any regularity.
The only laboratory test that is necessary in all cases is the test for 25-D. The 25-DThe vitamin D metabolite widely (and erroneously) considered best indicator of vitamin D "deficiency." Inactivates the Vitamin D Nuclear Receptor. Produced by hydroxylation of vitamin D3 in the liver. test is important because it suggests how much the immune system is being suppressed by vitamin D consumption. Patients can forgo the 1,25-D test, which is the more expensive of the two tests, if one's physician does not require it.
The 25-D test should be done prior to starting the MP and once or twice a year thereafter. The 1,25-DPrimary biologically active vitamin D hormone. Activates the vitamin D nuclear receptor. Produced by hydroxylation of 25-D. Also known as 1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol, 1,25-hydroxyvitamin D and calcitirol. test only needs to be done prior to the start of the MP, if at all.
Other routine and disease-specific laboratory tests, such as chest x-rays, may be needed as determined by a patient's physician.
Some doctors have been known to order an expensive panel of tests routinely on new patients. This is not part of the MP and you should carefully question the need for any test before you agree to it. Seek advice on the forum before you make any decision if the expense concerns you.
MP patients who experience any light sensitivity must protect their eyes using special sunglasses. While there are a couple of more stylish and expensive options, two pairs of basic NoIR sunglassses (10% and 2%) retail for around $40 each.
There is some financial help available for buying Benicar and other prescription medications. Benicar's own label, Daiichi Sankyo, sponsors one called the Open Care Program.
Main article: Obtaining olmesartan (Benicar)
Four (or more) times every day, MP patients take 40mg doses of olmesartan (Benicar), a medication for which there is no substitute. Patients can use the generic form (olmesartan medoxomil) or the brand name (Benicar). For patients who must buy olmesartan out of pocket, online discount pharmacies sell a month's worth of generic olmesartan for around $80 or less.
Patients who have a medication benefit to their insurance coverage, including Medicare and Medicaid, may have to file an appeal to obtain full coverage of the recommended dose of olmesartan. If any problems are encountered, patients usually win on appeal of their claims, unless their insurance policy specifically states that off-label use of medications is prohibited.
Low-dose antibiotics are optionally used during the MP. The most commonly used antibiotic is minocycline, which is available in low-cost generic formulations. Low-doses of a few other antibiotics may be optionally added. The cost of these optional antibiotics are generally reasonable, with some regional exceptions.