August 14, 2012
The Wall Street Journal’s Health Blog reports that many health care providers are stepping up their efforts to assist patients in making the lifestyle changes necessary to ward off Type 2 diabetes. Leading the charge, at least in terms of sheer numbers, is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention who, with PFCD partner Y of the USA and other community organizations, is implementing the successful Diabetes Prevention Program around the country.
The Diabetes Prevention Program is offered in many states, and increasingly the costs are covered by private health plans, including United. Following those efforts, the recently introduced Medicare Diabetes Prevention Act, which is supported by many advocacy groups including the American Diabetes Association, aims to cover this program under Medicare.
One in ten U.S. adults has diabetes, including 1 in 4 seniors. It’s the seventh leading cause of death and costs the nation more than $299 billion a year. With the obesity epidemic, diabetes will only get worse in America without sweeping changes. Helping people to understand their risk of developing diabetes, to take action to avoid diabetes and to better managing the disease once diagnosed are needed to reduce the human and economic toll of diabetes.
The Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease applauds efforts to bring proven preventive interventions to the millions in America at high risk of developing diabetes. To have a significant impact on individual and economic health, we need greater collaborative efforts to identify, support and invest in more evidence-based programs that focus on the prevention and management of chronic diseases.