Get Diabetes, Go Broke

Diabetes News Hound ran an article this morning about the rising cost of having diabetes and the struggles of those without adequate health insurance. You can read the full article here. Essentially it says that due to the struggling economy and other factors more people with diabetes are turning to free clinics, putting strains on those non-profits to help the masses. Additionally, the article notes a particular problem for those diabetics living in Texas.

Have you experiences financial repercussions because of the disease?


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Lose job, go broke, get stressed out, get sick. I have insurance but, I consider myself “under-insured”…I have $1000/yr coverage for durable equipment (pump, pump supplies, CGMS) and only $1200 for medications. I pay deductibles and high co-pays…, but I have “access”:slight_smile: With insurance, I am buying pump and now CGMS supplies on Craig’s List and Ebay. They will pay for if I go in the hospital, but not to keep me well. I had never been in the hospital since my diagnosis in 1981, but after loosing my job it became part of my reality. I spent 4 days in the hospital last Christmas for what looked like a benign scratch on my leg, turned infected. No problem healing, but cost of stay was over $52,000. I had to pay 20% of all care. I cannot imagine what it would be like if I had been in a car accident and added on a week in an ICU!

I believe we must advocated for clearer guidelines for coverage under any health care reform…if we are not specific about what we need to stay well…they will not provide it. It is short-sighted, but it is what they do. I am encouraged that the current talk of reforms has included several consumer protections: no pre-existing clauses, no limits on medications/coverage for lifetime. Just need to be sure we have well defined what medical care and treatments “are medically necessary” and important to persons w/ diabetes. I hope our legislators are listening to us. God knows they are listening to the insurers and drug companies because they have lobbyists. Who lobbies for the people?

So you ask…have I ever had issues w/ adequate coverage that led to financial concerns? You bet, but I continue to fight for what I need and what is just. I try to imagine a world where we do not need to worry about survival issues like will you make it through the night w/o brain damage. Seems like CGMS and pump therapy should be standards of care for a good number of us…irregardless if we are students, workers, entrepreneurs, the unfortunate poor, or lucky enough to be able to afford anything you want.