On the Money: Parental Perspectives About Finances and Type 1 Diabetes in Youth

Sahar S. Eshtehardi, Barbara J. Anderson, Viena T. Cao, Brett M. McKinney, Deborah I. Thompson, David G. Marrero, Marisa E. Hilliard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objective: Given the costs of diabetes care, finances may be a source of stress for parents of youth with type 1 diabetes. The purpose of this study was to characterize the perspectives of parents of youth with type 1 diabetes about diabetes-related expenses and any potential relationship with quality of life. Methods: Parents (n = 23, 96% mothers) of youth with type 1 diabetes (aged 5-17 years; 35% female, mean HbA1c = 8.7%) each completed a semistructured qualitative interview. Verbatim transcripts were coded using thematic analysis to derive central themes related to diabetes-related finances. Results: Two primary themes emerged: (a) sacrifices and hardships-Parents described making decisions about household finances to accommodate diabetes-related expenses and employment choices based on salary and benefits; many described prioritizing spending for diabetes supplies, healthy foods, and medical bills and forgoing spending related to family vacations, recreation, and personal needs; and (b) gratitude-Parents discussed feeling thankful for employment and insurance coverage, which help reduce diabetes-related financial stressors or hardships. Conclusions: Care of families of youth with type 1 diabetes should consider parents' financial experiences and effects on family. Routinely asking about diabetes-specific financial issues in relation to family stress and coping may help inform behavioral and medical care and can facilitate referrals to social work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalClinical Practice in Pediatric Psychology
StateAccepted/In press - 2020


  • Cost of illness
  • Parents
  • Pediatrics
  • Qualitative research
  • Type 1 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology

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    Eshtehardi, S. S., Anderson, B. J., Cao, V. T., McKinney, B. M., Thompson, D. I., Marrero, D. G., & Hilliard, M. E. (Accepted/In press). On the Money: Parental Perspectives About Finances and Type 1 Diabetes in Youth. Clinical Practice in Pediatric Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1037/cpp0000371