Living Well with Diabetes - Minnesota Department of Health

Living Well with Diabetes

Managing diabetes means keeping blood sugar levels and blood pressure levels within a range that you and your diabetes team have decided is safe for you. This means managing blood sugar levels every day over a lifetime. This can be challenging but there are people and resources to help you.

Managing diabetes is complex, yet many people do not have the education and support they need to manage it well on a daily basis. While there isn't a cure for diabetes, healthy lifestyle habits, taking medicine as needed, getting diabetes self-management education, and partnering with your health care providers can help reduce the impact diabetes has on your life.

Talking with your doctor

Being prepared with your questions and goals in mind will help you and your care team or doctor make treatment decisions and a diabetes care plan that works for you.

Find resources to help prepare for a doctor visit:

Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support (DSMES)

Diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) programs can help you manage your diabetes. Ask your primary care doctor for a referral to a DSMES program or to meet with a certified diabetes educator. DSMES is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most insurance plans (copays and deductibles may apply – contact your insurance company for details).

Diabetes education can help you by:

  • Finding the best foods and meal plans that fit your life and budget
  • Helping you understand diabetes and how it affects your body
  • Showing you how your medications work and how to take them correctly
  • Offering tips for coping and solving problems
  • Helping you to set realistic goals for your diabetes
  • Offering tools to help you track your progress

Help with insulin or medications

The cost of diabetes prescription medications and insulin has risen sharply in recent years. If you are finding it hard to pay for your medications or insulin, talk to your doctor. Never cut back or stop taking your medication.

If you are struggling to pay for your insulin, see if you qualify for Minnesota's Insulin Safety Net Program. You may be eligible for a one-time 30-day supply of insulin for $35, or a year supply for $50 per 90-day prescription.

The American Diabetes Association also has information on prescription assistance and insulin support.

Insurance and Medical Costs

In Minnesota, most health insurance plans, Medicaid and Medicare will cover your prescription medications, diabetes supplies and equipment, and diabetes self-management education. Some people may have copays or deductibles. Check with your health insurance company for details. MDH and other organizations have provided helpful information on insurance, and what is or is not covered.

Help for caregivers

Caregivers are family members and friends who provide help and support to a person with diabetes. Too often, caregivers are not given the information, education and tools they need to provide the right support.


It’s hard to manage diabetes on your own. Support can come from family members, friends, support groups and even online communities who care about you. Tap into their support for encouragement, understanding and assistance.

Other resources

Updated Monday, 21-Mar-2022 15:55:29 CDT