Getting Personal About Diabetes

Les Masterson, for HealthLeaders Media , April 21, 2010

Having a pro-active, properly trained pharmacist to help an individual improve his or her health status is a positive step, but only if it's done with physician involvement.

That being said, there is reason for hope. Creating a benefit design that removes cost barriers has been shown to improve patient medication and treatment adherence. Focusing on diabetes is the right start because the disease can lead to other ailments, but these projects hopefully will lead to other specific disease plans, such as heart disease and asthma.

These are the kinds of innovations health insurers and employers will need to try in order to remove cost barriers and lower long-range health costs. That's beneficial on a systemwide level, but let's also remember the personal reasons for these kinds of programs—they may help diabetics and prediabetics live longer lives and cause fewer young men to lose their fathers too soon.

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Les Masterson is an editor for HealthLeaders Media.

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