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Many Americans still lack control over diabetes

Diabetes can have a devastating effect on many parts of the body. When these disabling effects prevent a people from working, they may be eligible for Social Security Disability/Supplemental Security Income (SSD/SSI) benefits to help supplement their incomes.

Diabetes is one of the impairments listed on the Social Security Administration's listing of impairments, which means it is easier to qualify for benefits. However, it is not enough to state that you have diabetes. You must also provide medical evidence to support this claim and demonstrate that the condition prevents you from working.

That is because not all people with diabetes need SSD or SSDI benefits. In fact, research shows that more Americans are successful in managing their diabetes. About 20 years ago, only 2 percent of people with diabetes met the description of "good diabetes management." In 2010, 19 percent were determined to be successfully managing diabetes.

However, the director of the Clinical Diabetes Center at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City said the statistics could be interpreted in a negative way, as well. He said that there is so much awareness today about diabetes and medications available that it is somewhat alarming that only 19 percent of people are successfully managing their condition.

The director said education is key for people with diabetes and all too often, people aren't receiving education until late in the disease. In these cases, it may be too late to get control over the disease, and these are often the people who end up needing to depend on SSD and SSI for support. Luckily, it's there for them.

Source: Health, "More Americans Successfully Managing Diabetes," Serena Gordon, Feb. 18, 2013

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