I blogged just the other day about free clinics providing services for diabetics. Today, though, there was a scarier article: A lot of diabetics aren't seeking out free or low-cost help, but are instead cutting back on their medications.
The article talks about how diabetics who have lost their jobs and/or health insurance due to the recession are cutting back on their medications in order to save money. The cost of medications for an uninsured diabetic is given as $350 to $900 per month, which blows my mind. That's nearly the equivalent of the rent or mortgage for many people.
To me, this article demonstrates why the United States so badly needs universal health care. Forcing someone to choose between having a place to live and staying alive at all is not right. Furthermore, not only does this type of thing hurt the people cutting back, it also hurts the rest of the people, whose health care costs go up in order to absorb the cost of hospitalizing these people when their health deteriorates.
It's in our best interests to ensure that everyone, especially people with chronic conditions such as diabetes, have guaranteed access to health care. I think our current administration understands that; but how many more will suffer because they can't afford their medications before something will be done about it?