Gaps In Health Coverage Can Disrupt Preventive Care

People with diabetes who don't have health insurance aren't getting enough preventive care, according to a new study. For diabetics, regular preventive care can mean the difference between a normal life and serious health problems like stroke, heart attack and amputation. But it's not happening.

The people in the study were going to the doctor; they had gone to federally funded "safety net" clinics in Oregon at least 3 times from 2005 through 2007. About half of the 3,384 people with diabetes in the study were uninsured, and about half had public insurance like Medicaid.

The people who had breaks in their insurance coverage were much less likely to get tests that diabetics are supposed to have at least once a year, including cholesterol screening, kidney function and HbA1c screening.

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Sources: Kaiser Health News; NPR