How to Get Help Paying for Elecare

If you’re reading this, you probably have a baby with a very specialized diet, which they need in order to survive and be healthy. You probably also found out how much it costs.

While other “big box” brands of formula have some varieties that are pricey, they also offer coupons and savings clubs that offset the cost. Elecare does not.

Should I Switch?

There are alternate brands for babies who have a hard time digesting, such as Nutramigen and Neocate. While many of the larger suppliers like Gerber or Similac have started to offer gentle and natural formulas, I have yet to see a hospital use or recommend one of those formulas. It could just be because they aren’t well established yet. Talk to your pediatrician before you decide to switch if you are considering it. In my research, some people have claimed success in switching formulas, though the process is usually gradual over a few weeks. For me, it was not worth seeing my baby suffer while we tried switching to something that may not even work for us.

There is Help

There is no guarantee that you can get help paying for your Elecare, but there are a few ways that you can reduce your costs.


I’ll start with Amazon because it’s available to anyone, anywhere. If you need help right now, this is the fastest way to get it. I’ve recently been using Amazon Prime to cut my costs on a lot of things. You can get a free trial here
Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial



With all the products I have bought for my baby lately, the fact that it seems they deliver almost immediately has won my heart. I have most of my products within a day or two and they even deliver on Sundays. Cost of Elecare at Walmart is $45, at CVS it is $55. At Amazon it is $31. Here is the link to the EleCare at Amazon

In addition to the cheaper price, if you put it on your registry you can also earn points for free diapers of your choice through Amazon’s Diaper Rewards Program.


This was my best option while I explored other venues to try to get help. The trick to getting the best price at Amazon is choosing the right seller. The link I’ve provided is the best price I’ve found and it is directly through Amazon Prime.

Some people have purchased their Elecare from Ebay. If you have no other option, it’s something to consider. I’m very leery of random sellers so I don’t recommend it.


WIC stands for Women, Infants, and Children. The hospital may have already talked to you about WIC, but if they haven’t then it doesn’t hurt to at least apply. We were in the hospital for over 2 months before anyone talked to us about any kind of assistance. Most of the time you can apply online. WIC is handled through your individual state, so Google WIC in your state to get the link to apply. There are federal guidelines that you can view here but it seems like different states do different things. I spoke to a woman in Washington whose WIC only covers part of the formula costs and another in Ohio who said hers covered all of it.

WIC does work according to income. You must provide pay stubs and possibly other proof of income. If you are self employed, they will want last year’s taxes and they will measure your gross income. However, per the lady I spoke to at the WIC office, if you qualify for Medicaid, then you qualify for WIC automatically. Medicaid uses a different income scale than WIC does and currently uses a formula that adjusts for self employed people.


Hospital Freebies

Don’t be afraid to ask for sample cans before you leave the hospital. They gave me one to go home with then had another 6 sent to my house to tide us over while we worked out how we are going to cover paying for it. If you are already home from the hospital, you can ask to speak to the nutritionist there to see if they can help.



Insurance plans are complicated things. Normally the hospital or your doctor can call to check on your plan to see if it will cover your formula. Many insurance companies do not cover food, but it doesn’t hurt to try.


If your insurance said no, don’t despair. Contact Pathway who will check further into your situation. In some circumstances, Pathway is able to talk to the right people to get your baby the specialized food he needs under your coverage plan by explaining your specific situation. The process can take a week or two, but the people at Pathway are very nice and wonderful about keeping you informed of the progress of the case and your next steps.

If approved, the insurance will work only through certain outlets to provide your Elecare. These are medical supply outlets that provide things like wheelchairs, lifts, and other equipment for specialized medical needs. Elecare is an unusual supplement in that many insurance agencies will cover it when presented with the correct information, but they will be picky as to how it is provided. You won’t be able to pick it up at the store.



If everyone else says no, Abbot may help. Click here to download their current form to see if they have a program that will help cover or offset your costs.








  1. You know from an Elecare mom, this is such a great information you’re sharing. Thank you. Both my sons (4 year-old and new new 3 month-old) needed Elecare (Alimentum, nutramigen or Neocate did not even help, it made their little tummy worse) with or without insurance. We eventually had to pay out of pocket and that is no joke. Funny story infact. We took a road trip to Orlando from Tampa and DH and I packed up everything else (hot water in a flask, extra bottles and giant load of bibs (throw up is major; my son’s G.I specialist calls him a “happy Spitter”, putting that lightly LOL) but we forgot a can of…you guessed it! Oh google search to the rescue and eventually (after 30 miles and a hungry 3 month-old), we found a Walgreen that had a can for 60 bucks. THE best 60 bucks we have ever had to spend considering!
    It is so empowering to read blogs as yours that helps and support families that might need assistance with this basic need for our little ones. Thank you again.
    I am totally subscribing!

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! They mean a lot :). Thank you also for sharing your story! It’s amazing how many babies end up needing specialized formula, yet we see so little about it in advertisements or media.

  2. Your pediatrition may also give free samples or a coupon code for a discount from an online purchase. had a link for a free case as well. 1 time use per household. We did both of those and it got us a good about for free when my insurance changed and I found out Cigna does not cover formula.

  3. Have just 1 can left and Medicaid told me I was covered , that I just needed a prescription to a pharmacy , just left Walmart and I was told it is not covered. Saddest day of my life . I can’t afford this formula. Really tough for our finances.
    What else can I try?

    1. Are you eligible for WIC? That is usually the first go-to. In some states, if you are eligible for Medicaid then you are automatically eligible for WIC. They will give you coupons for the formula which you can use in the store. Ask your doctor for cans to tide you over if they are willing. If you have to buy it, Amazon is the cheapest.

      Normally, insurance will not cover cans that you pick up in the store. Instead, they have to be issued through medical supply. Medicaid may require this also, so talk to your rep at Medicaid. If they turn you down, next, contact the phone number above. We were turned down everywhere else but they were able to help us get it covered through our insurance. We were turned down over and over prior to that. They will walk you through the process

  4. My pediatrician is refusing to give me another prescription for WIC so I’m on my own if I want to keep my daughter on this. I’m livid with the office and their lack of interest in my wishes for my daughter and how I feel about them deciding it’s just time for a change whether I like it or not. I’m looking into all sorts of options to help cover cost but the nurse at my daughter’s ped office called to tell me that they would not offer a letter of medical necessity to insurance to help me keep her on this bc they don’t think Medicaid will cover it and I’ve not given other formulas enough time to see if she’ll tolerate them. I’d honestly love to take DD anywhere else and get another ped asap but it’s taking time unfortunately. Any advice?

    1. Our pediatrician also gave us some difficulty after he got a year old. We ended up using goat milk, which seemed to not upset his tummy, but of course that doesn’t work for every baby. There are some goat milk based formulas also that we had some success with. We blended it in with the last of his Elecare. If it is an age thing, Elecare does make a toddler formula as well. Might the pediatrician consider that? Is he/she the original prescribing pediatrician? If your baby was a preemie or had been hospitalized, you may be able to find someone at the hospital that will help with the prescription too. Also, try contacting Abbott directly from above and see if they have an ideas on getting coverage or a more cost-effective way to obtain it.

  5. am I just completely missing the link for the free case of formula, I can find coupons for all formulas EXCEPT elecare.

    1. Currently I haven’t been able to find a coupon for free formula, but you can try some of the ideas above on where to get free cans or discounted cans. Unfortunately, because Elecare is so specialized it’s rare to find a coupon for it like regular brands. The company is really good about trying to help you get it covered under insurance. Their contact info is above. The free cases are usually ordered by a doctor or hospital where the baby is born and is done through the manufacturer. They only give one per person, though.

  6. I am the mother of a baby who was born at 25 weeks of gestation, was transferred to Texas Childrens Medical Center and she had emergency surgery on her intestine, her food was Elecare during the first 8 months of life. Currently she uses Alimentum and we have some boxes of Elecare formula to donate. The expiration date is Dec 2021 and some in Oct 2021. As you know, this is a very special formula and nothing cheap, I would like to donate it to someone who really needs it. Actually I’m living in Houston, Tx

    1. We really need it and would appreciate it. Unfortunately, due to covid, my husbands position was eliminated and my pay was cut 25%. The one we use is the 0-12 months with iron.

    2. I would happily pick up from you if this is still available. I am in Houston as well. Thank you for being so generous.

  7. I have tons of elecare jr I am trying to find a home for. If anyone is in need please let me know. I know how it was when my kid had to go on this formula and couldn’t find it. 51 dollars a can will bankrupt you especially if you are using a 1 1/2 can a day.

    Oley foundation is a great source of help too. They will work diligently to find what you need

    1. That’s wonderful of you thank you so much for helping out! I hope someone is able to reach you for it 🙂

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