Research Article| Volume 53, ISSUE 1, P26-32, January 2005

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Health insurance for type 1 diabetes mellitus: US competition and French coverage

      Chronic diseases present a major challenge to individuals, health professionals, and policy makers. Disease burdens and fears of a lifelong condition are complicated by the volatility of health insurance. Individuals with type 1 diabetes mellitus face these challenges daily. Treatment needs persist despite changes in individual health insurance or health plan coverage, yet this costly and devastating disease does not discriminate economically. The demands for care are the same for the under- and uninsured as they are for the fully insured. As life expectancy lengthens for individuals with type 1 diabetes mellitus, a greater potential exists for significant variability in coverage. This article presents a review and analysis of health insurance issues among adults 18–64 years old and extrapolates the consequences for those in the United States (US) with type 1 diabetes mellitus. Comparisons are made with the French health care system, ranked 1st by the World Health Organization in 2000.
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      Mary E. Duffy is a Professor at University of Utah College of Nursing, Salt Lake City, UT.