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Managing and Preventing Diabetes

We can help you live your best life with diabetes

You may have diabetes or high blood sugar, or you may be at risk for developing diabetes. Understanding what it means for your health and the best ways to take care of yourself can make all the difference.

That’s why we offer personal wellness programs that can help you make lifestyle changes and lead a healthy, happy life. And the best part? You can use these programs at no additional cost with your UPMC for Life membership.

We hope you find this information helpful as you take steps toward maintaining your best health. Click each drop-down tab below to learn more!

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New for 2020! Lower copays for diabetes medications

Taking your diabetes medications as prescribed is important. That’s why many UPMC for Life plans will be offering lower copays for covered diabetes prescriptions starting January 1, 2020. These medications are now on Tier 2 of our formulary. Take advantage of copays as low as $10 by using one of our preferred pharmacies like Giant Eagle, Rite Aid, Sam’s Club, Walgreens, and Walmart.

These medications now have lower copays: Basaglar, Glyxambi, Humulin 70/30, Humulin N, Humulin R, Humalog, Humalog Mix, Jardiance, Jentadueto, Jentadueto XR, Lantus, Lantus Solostar, Ozempic, Symlin, Synjardy, Synjardy XR, Toujeo Solostar, Toujeo Max Solostar, Tradjenta, Trulicity, Victoza, and Xultophy pen.

2020 Tier 2 Copays
30-day supply
Preferred pharmacy$10 copay
Standard pharmacy$20 copay
90-day supply
Preferred pharmacy$20 copay
Standard pharmacy$48 copay
Mail Order$20 copay

These copays apply only during the Initial Coverage Stage. Members who receive Low Income Subsidy (Extra Help paying for Part D prescriptions) may not have these copays. Reduced copays do not apply to the HMO no Rx, HMO Premier Rx, and some employer group plans. See your plan formulary for more information.

Health coaching and personal care management

Improving your health isn’t always easy. You may understand the importance of eating healthy, staying active, and taking your medications. But you may not know how to do these things in a way that’s right for you. We can help you understand your health and how you can improve it. We have registered nurses and social workers who can work with your doctors, pharmacy, other health care providers, and insurance to make sure you’re getting the right care.

Ready to get started? Call us toll-free at 1-833-825-2695 (TTY: 711) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. We have health coaches and personal care managers who will create a customized program for your health.

A UPMC Health Plan health coach can help you:

  • Make changes that will have the most impact on your health and well-being.
  • Set goals, learn new skills, and overcome challenges on the path to success.
  • Stay on track and reach your goals by providing ongoing support and access to resources.
  • Understand your treatment options and know when to discuss concerns with your doctor.

A personal care manager can help you:

  • Schedule appointments and connect you with the best doctors for your needs.
  • Understand your doctor’s instructions after a visit.
  • Reach out to your doctor’s office if a prescription cannot be filled or a service is not covered.
  • Find ways to save on your prescription drug costs.
  • Connect you with services in your community.

Your doctor can also connect you with the help you need. If your doctor participates in the UPMC Prescription for Wellness program, he or she can give you a prescription for health coaching.

Health benefits of a plant-based diet

A plant-based diet can improve your health and well-being. Not only is it great for weight-loss, it can even treat and prevent health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease.

Here’s why:

Foods that are high in fat can prevent insulin from moving sugar out of your bloodstream. When sugar stays in the bloodstream, it can lead to diabetes. Because a plant-based diet is low-fat, it helps insulin more easily move sugar out of the bloodstream. +++

What to keep in mind with a plant-based diet:

  • A plant-based diet is less about portion control and more about eating low-fat, unprocessed foods.
  • Your diet should mostly consist of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds.
  • Make meat a side rather than the main dish.
  • Watch your intake of sweets. Fruit is an excellent choice to satisfy this craving.
  • Drink lots of water.

Talk to your doctor about what you should and should not be eating. Your doctor or a health coach can make suggestions to help you create a meal plan that works for you.

Looking for healthy meal options?

Try the options below or check out our UPMC MyHealth Matters blog to get tips and more recipes for healthy eating.

+++Source: Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

Improve your health using your mobile phone

Want extra help to improve your health? We have an app for that!

Odyssey by UPMC is a mobile app that can help you be healthy and have fun while you do it! Odyssey is packed with tools to help you feel motivated to reach your health goals. You can choose your activities based on your needs, then work to make progress with the support and guidance of a virtual health coach.

The Odyssey app can help you:

  • Manage your weight.
  • Improve your nutrition.
  • Reduce your stress.
  • Increase your physical activity.
  • Quit using tobacco.

It’s easy to get started! Simply search for "Odyssey by UPMC" in the Apple App Store or Google Play, and download the app.

Benefits of exercising

Talk to your doctor or health coach about the type of exercises you should be doing and how much time you should spend exercising each week.

Here are some benefits of exercising:

  • It helps control your blood sugar.
  • It lowers your blood pressure and cholesterol.
  • It reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • It burns calories to help you get to or maintain a healthy weight.
  • It helps relieve stress and ease signs of depression.
  • It improves your balance to help you avoid falls.

Tips for being safe when you exercise:

  • Check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.
  • Check your blood sugar before and after you exercise.
  • Try to exercise at the same time each day or week to keep you blood sugar steady.
  • Keep quick sugar foods with you. Your blood sugar may drop while you are exercising.
  • Use the right footwear and equipment.
  • Pay attention to your body. If you notice that you’re having trouble exercising, talk to your doctor.

SilverSneakers® fitness benefit

Get fit and stay active with the SilverSneakers® health and wellness program. You can join a local fitness facility or work out at home with fitness kits. This benefit is free for UPMC for Life members.

With SilverSneakers, you get:

  • Access to more than 16,000 fitness locations.
  • Unlimited access to participating locations.
  • One FREE personal training session each year at a participating fitness facility.
  • Access to group classes designed for all levels.§
  • Access to pools, weights, and cardio equipment to customize your workouts.
  • Access to SilverSneakers On-DemandTM so you can work out in the comfort of your own home.

For help finding a participating fitness facility near you, call your Health Care Concierge team toll-free at 1-877-539-3080 (TTY: 711) seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.*


Mall-walking is easy and stress-free, and you can do it for as long as you’d like (mall hours permitting) no matter what the weather looks!

Here are some benefits of mall-walking:

  • You can do it for free!
  • You can walk alone or in a group.
  • You can easily get to a mall. Many have bus stops on-site or nearby.
  • You can stop and rest on a bench, if necessary, and use the mall’s water fountains and restrooms.
  • You can feel safe when you’re exercising. Malls have level floors, and security staff members are available if you find you need help.
  • You can do it without buying special equipment. All you need are comfortable walking shoes.
  • You can exercise and socialize in a friendly place.
  • You can stay active without worrying about the weather.

For help finding a mall near you, call your Health Care Concierge team toll-free at 1-877-539-3080 (TTY: 711) seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.*

Participating locations (“PL”) are not owned by Tivity Health, Inc. of its affiliates. Use of PL facilities and amenities is limited to terms and conditions of PL basic membership. Facilities and amenities vary by PL.

§Membership includes SilverSneakers instructor-led group fitness classes. Some locations offer membership additional classes. Classes vary by location.

This information is not a complete description of benefits. Call 1-866-400-5077 (TTY: 711) for more information. Out-of-network/non-contracted providers are under no obligation to treat UPMC for Life members, except in emergency situations. Please call our customer service number or see your Evidence of Coverage for more information, including the cost-sharing that applies to out-of-network services. Other physicians/providers are available in the UPMC for Life network.

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call our customer service number at 1-877-539-3080 (TTY: 711).

UPMC for Life has a contract with Medicare to provide HMO, HMO SNP, and PPO plans. The HMO SNP plans have a contract with the PA State Medical Assistance program. Enrollment in UPMC for Life depends on contract renewal.

Tivity Health and SilverSneakers are registered trademarks or trademarks of Tivity Health, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

UPMC for Life Members
Call us toll-free: 1-877-539-3080
TTY: 711

Oct. 1 through Mar. 31:
seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Apr. 1 through Sept. 30:
Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Saturday: 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

UPMC for Life Prospective Members
Call us toll-free: 1-866-400-5077
TTY: 711

Oct. 1 through Dec. 31:
seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Jan. 1 through Sept. 30:
Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Saturday: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Last Updated: 10/01/2019
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