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April is Defeat Diabetes Month. Pictured is the Veterans Memorial Hospital Diabetes Educator Angie Mettille, who is available to meet when needed to help you defeat diabetes

April is Defeat Diabetes Month-Diabetes Education Remains Essential

April is Defeat Diabetes Month.  Diabetes is a disease full of challenges. Every day presents decisions that need to be made and sometimes problems that need to be solved. What should I eat for breakfast? How many carbohydrates are in that bowl of soup? How will that banana affect my blood sugar? Did I take my insulin this morning?  My blood sugar is higher than normal, what do I do? I’m worried about my risk of heart disease and stroke because my A1c has been higher than my doctor likes, how can I decrease my chance of complications? How am I going to pay for my insulin this month?

A diabetes educator can help you defeat diabetes by developing a plan to stay healthy and give you the tools you need to navigate the various curveballs that diabetes can throw at you.

Diabetes education should be a part of your yearly, or more often if needed, routine. The best time for diabetes education is:

1) When you’re first diagnosed with diabetes.

2) Annually to review your treatment plan and make improvements as needed.

3) Whenever complications arise such as vision changes, cardiac disease or stroke, kidney disease, neuropathy, persistent infections or wounds that are not healing as they should.

4) During changes in your healthcare treatment, such as medication changes or major life events that affect how you manage diabetes – physically, socially, mentally or financially. Whatever problem is causing your blood sugars to be too low or too high, your diabetes educators can help you design a specific plan that will work for you and your life.

Continuous glucose monitoring is also available, which is extremely helpful with making insulin and medication adjustments to help attain A1c and blood sugar goals.

The Veterans Memorial Hospital Diabetes Self Management program is accredited by the ADCES (Association of Diabetes Care and Education Specialists, formerly the AADE.  By maintaining this accreditation, appointments that are deemed medically necessary are covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and commercial insurance plans. Deductibles and co pays may still apply, depending on the individual’s personal plan.

For more information about defeating diabetes, please contact the Diabetes Education Department at Veterans Memorial Hospital at 563-568-3411 ext. 172.