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September 6, 2001

Community Resources

Question from :

I am a 19 year old college student who has type�1 diabetes, and was diagnosed with myasthenia gravis a year ago. I have had diabetes for six years, and I am still struggling with it. I of course want to go out and party, drink beer, eat whatever and whenever, and still think I will be okay, but I know that is not true! I have gone to one year of college and decided that until I take care of myself, I will not be attending this semester. I have never had help on any of my medicines and am currently now using Humalog and Ultralente. I pay a lot for insulin. It is not easy paying this much money and trying to live comfortably. I presently have been living on my own and cannot afford to get that insulin. Not good huh! I need to know if I am eligible for any type of medical help on my prescriptions. My parents live in South Dakota and I am in Houston, Texas so it makes this very difficult. My parents are self-employed ranchers, and the income is not coming in. I am presently working eight hours a day at minimum wage and trying to get on the right track with my health, but I am struggling! Anyhow I guess I just would like your input on how I can get some help with my medication. I have no insurance and no company will pick me up because of my medical background. I really would like the pump, but with no insurance and not a lot of income, I don't think I can be eligible for it!


I showed this e-mail to one of our social workers. She pointed out that States differ in their response to this situation and none of her suggestions sounded very helpful to me. They were:

Try to get employment that includes health insurance.
Go back to school so as to be covered by the student health service.
Try for ‘disability’ through Social Services on the grounds of diabetes and myasthenia.
If number three fails on the grounds of not being a permanent Texas resident, try in South Dakota.

If it’s all true, it seems awful that we plan on a missile defense and can’t help this young person.

Additional comments from David S. Holtzman, Esq.:

As absurd as it sounds, if you were not working, you would be eligible for Medicaid to handle your health care issues. Sadly, I have no other suggestions.


[Editor’s comment: I suggest that you contact the local affiliate of the American Diabetes Association in Houston. Another resource would be the local department of social services. They will know of free clinics, etc. where you can get help for your diabetes.