Diagnosis before diabetes
In addition to 30 million Americans with diabetes, 86 million live with pre-diabetes, where blood glucose levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to diagnose diabetes.
Pre-diabetes can be treated. But they will know that they have only 1 out of 10. Left untreated, a full-fledged disease develops in 1 year.
Faced with these statistics, Medicare is increasing its efforts to prevent diabetes among millions of Medicare beneficiaries and this poses an emerging risk.
A few years ago, Medicare collaborated with YMCA across the country to initiate an initiative for patients with diabetes. The pilot project showed that older people can lose weight through regular meetings that emphasize lifestyle counseling and healthy eating habits and exercises.
Approximately half of the participants accounted for an average of 5 percent of their weight; they said that these health authorities were sufficient to significantly reduce the risk of full-fledged diabetes. By adopting a healthier lifestyle, people diagnosed with diabetes may delay the onset of the disease.
Based on the encouraging results of the trial program, Medicare is now expanding its scope for the prevention of diabetes. The use of the pilot project as a model will help to charge a consultancy program to improve the nutrition of the beneficiaries, increase their physical activity and reduce stress.
If you have Part B or Part C insurance from Medicare and you are pre-diabetic, you can participate in a series of coaching sessions conducted by health care providers for one to two years and in community organizations such as local senior centers. It won't cost you.
You can learn more about this new advantage in the 2019 edition. Medicare and you Handbook that has recently been posted to everyone with Medicare.
Diabetes can be a terrible debilitating disease. This may mean lifetime tests, injections and health problems. In this country, 14 adults are diagnosed every five minutes. And within the same five minutes, two more people will die from diabetes-related reasons.
Even if we can prevent diabetes before we start, we can help people to live longer and more fully, and also to save money on our health system.
Bob Moos, Southwestern public affairs officer for Medicare and Medicaid Services Centers in the US.