For diabetics, a steady job is good for your health

August 29, 2012

If you're diabetic or prone to diabetes, having a steady job appears to be good for your health, and not just because of the insurance coverage.

A new University of Michigan study found that that jobless working-age people with diabetes are less likely to adhere to their oral anti-diabetic medications than diabetics who are employed. Further, people of working age with diabetes are more likely to be unemployed than those who do not have diabetes.

The lack of a clear-cut, cause-and-effect relationship between insurance and surprised lead researcher Rajesh Balkrishnan of the U-M College of Pharmacy and School of Public Health.

"Improved use of medications is more than just a facet of having medical insurance. It is linked to bigger issues such as being employed, periods of or a personal financial strain," said Balkrishnan, who believes that a healthier, active lifestyle and access to medical care resources through employers that want employees to remain productive play a big role in adherence.

Other factors that account for lack of medication adherence include lack of financial resources, stress due to unemployment and lack of access to health care.

Researchers looked at diabetes because it is one of the most commonly present chronic conditions in working-age adults in the United States, Balkrishnan said. And globally, diabetes is the seventh-leading cause of death and the eighth-most costly disease to treat. In 2007, total for diabetes were estimated at $174 billion.

Policy changes would help, Balkrishnan said.

"Workforce participation for adults with diabetes and other command the attention of public policymakers, particularly when prioritizing resource allocation," he said. "As a starting position, and systems need standard processes to identify individuals facing financial pressure and their vulnerability to lower medication adherence."

More information: The study, "Associations between joblessness and oral anti-diabetic medication adherence in U.S. diabetic working-age adults," appears in the online journal Health Outcomes Research in Medicine. www.healthoutcomesresearch.org/article/S1877-1319%2812%2900031-6/abstract

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Promising progress for new treatment of type 1 diabetes

July 30, 2015

New research from Uppsala University shows promising progress in the use of anti-inflammatory cytokine for treatment of type 1 diabetes. The study, published in the open access journal Scientific Reports, reveals that administration ...

Bacteria may cause type 2 diabetes

June 1, 2015

Bacteria and viruses have an obvious role in causing infectious diseases, but microbes have also been identified as the surprising cause of other illnesses, including cervical cancer (Human papilloma virus) and stomach ulcers ...

'Crosstalk' gives clues to diabetes

June 15, 2015

Sometimes, listening in on a conversation can tell you a lot. For Mark Huising, an assistant professor in the Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior at the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences, that crosstalk ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.