The patient holds the key in diabetes treatment

Tue, 11 Jul 2006
The single most important person when treating and managing diabetes is the patient themselves. That is the verdict of the East Central District Health Department in America, who are offering a free or sliding fee service based on income to diabetes patients.

The department, aided by health centres, is a small part of a national initiative to provide a comprehensive diabetes care program to increase the quality of care provided to diabetics . Rebecca Rayman, a large part of the study, said, "you have to be in charge. It really comes down to self-management ." Of the program, she said, "I really believe it will change how we treat people with diabetes."

According to the Centres for Disease Control diabetes is now the sixth-leading cause of death in the USA. Currently, the health department offers a diabetes self-management program that lasts for 12 weeks. Even if you just have serious diabetes risk factors, you are still eligible to attend. Classes are provided in English and Spanish .

Diabetics have blood glucose levels that are above normal, which in turn can cause serious health complications such as heart disease, blindness, kidney failure and lower-extremity amputations. The program teaches the patients how to identify healthy and unhealthy food, how to cook healthily, how to shop for healthy food, how to understand food labels, and how exercise can lower blood sugar levels.
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