Every year, The American Diabetes Association declares the fourth Tuesday of March “Diabetes Alert Day®,” a wake-up call to the American public to take the Diabetes Risk Test. The Diabetes Risk Test, which is offered free of charge, asks simple questions about weight, age, family history and other potential risk factors for prediabetes or type 2 diabetes.
In Easton, Diabetes Alert Day® is being observed all day at Hearthstone Health and Fitness Center by staff from the University of Maryland Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology who will have a table set up at Hearthstone providing the Diabetes Risk Test and extensive information on diabetes prevention, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and management. Community residents are invited to stop in at their convenience to pick up information, and during the afternoon hours, the Center’s certified diabetes educators will be available to answer questions.
Nationwide, for each Diabetes Risk Test taken between March 25 and April 25, 2014, Boar’s Head Brand, a leading provider of premium delicatessen products, s will donate $5 to the American Diabetes Association up to $50,000.
At 5:30 p.m., the Center’s endocrinologists, Kenneth Ligaray, MD and Faustino Macuha, Jr., MD will discuss Diabetes Prevention and Complications; and Doris Allen, RN, CDE, the Center’s lead diabetes educator, will speak on The Importance of Blood Glucose Monitoring. These presentations are open to the public, free of charge.
Diabetes Alert Day® is just one way in which the UM Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology educates the public about the disease and supports patients and their families who are dealing with its effects. Diabetes self-management classes and support group meetings are scheduled every month at the UM Shore Medical Centers at Easton and Chestertown, and a weekly class addressing gestational diabetes issues is offered every Thursday at UMSMC at Easton.
Current estimates on the prevalence of diabetes on the Eastern Shore suggest that one in nine person has the disease, but many are not aware of it. According to Allen, people who have prediabetes often can make lifestyle changes to improve their health and lower their risk for a full onset of the disease. Allen adds, “Those diagnosed with diabetes also can learn to manage the disease so as to avoid complications such as skin disorders, nerve damage, glaucoma, cataracts and kidney disease. We want all residents of UM Shore Regional Health’s five-county region to know that the UM Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology is here to help prevent diabetes and to help diabetic patients maintain their best possible health.”
For information about UM Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology Services in Easton, call 410-822-1000, ext. 5757; for services in Chestertown, call 410-778-7668, ext. 2175.